Tour of Pennsylvania invites U25 teams

The Tour of Pennsylvania announced Wednesday that it was seeking applications from international...

The Tour of Pennsylvania announced Wednesday that it was seeking applications from international young cycling teams to compete in the inaugural edition of its Under 25 stage race set for June 24-29, 2008. The international tour will begin with a prologue time trial in Philadelphia and will cover approximately 500 miles over six days, with finish-line events in Philadelphia, Carlisle, Bedford and Latrobe and a race grand finale in Pittsburgh to help celebrate the southwest Pennsylvania region's 250th anniversary.

"We're inviting at least 20 six-rider teams of the world's best young cyclists in the espoir class, including some who may participate in the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games and Tour de France," said Jerry Casale, chief operating officer of Pro Cycling Tour, LLC, the company that is organizing the race.

The Tour of Pennsylvania route will roughly follow the historic Forbes Road (along US Route 30), which was created in 1758 when British General John Forbes and Colonel George Washington forged a trail through the challenging terrain of the Allegheny Mountains to the Forks of the Ohio during the French and Indian War, founding Bedford, Ligonier and Pittsburgh along the way. "The route's combination of challenging terrain and the Pittsburgh circuits make it the ideal format for a stage race," said Casale.

US $150,000 will be awarded in stage prizes, overall general classification and special competitions. Teams interested in applying should contact Robin Zellner, Technical Director at rzellner@procyclingtour.com.

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