Organisers of the Colorado Classic today announced the first 14 teams that have been confirmed for the inaugural edition of the 2.HC race planned for August, with four WorldTour teams headlining the initial list.
UAE Team Emirates joins US WorldTour teams BMC Racing, Cannondale-Drapac and Trek-Segafredo on the initial list of 14 teams, which organisers said will grow to 16-18 teams by the time the race rolls out of Colorado Springs on August 10. The four-stage 2.HC race will also visit Breckenridge and Denver before the finish on August 13.
The list of teams announced on Wednesday also includes Pro Continental teams Caja Rural Seguros RGA from Spain, Israel Cycling Aacademy, Nippo-Vini Fantini from Italy, and US teams Novo Nordisk and UnitedHealthcare. Five Continental teams also made the list, including Axeon Hagens Berman, Elevate-KHS, Holowesko-Citadel, Jelly Belly-Maxxis and Rally Cycling, all from the US.
"We are excited to have such a competitive field — including four World Tour teams — for the inaugural Colorado Classic," said David Koff, CEO of RPM Events Group, the organization formed to put on the race. "With increased demands on teams dictated by a crowded international calendar, we are extremely grateful to the committed teams. The quality of the field once again validates Colorado as a world-class cycling destination.
The race begins Thursday, August 10, with a circuit race in Colorado Springs and continues the following day in Breckenridge. Day 3 starts in Denver for the "Peak to Peak Highway out-and-back" stage, followed by the final circuit race in Denver on Sunday, August 13. The grew out of the ashes of the now-defunct USA pro Challenge, which took place in Colorado from 2011-2015.
"Drawing a high-caliber field to Colorado is helped by the state's deep history with bike racing, the quality of courses and the passion of cycling fans," said Race Director Jim Birrell. "The Colorado Classic is building on that to create a race that will be memorable for spectators and teams alike."
The race will be televised on the NBC Sports Network and will be live streamed on NBC Sports Gold. Paul Sherwen will call the action on NBCSN and NBC Sports Gold, joined by analyst Christian Vande Velde and reporter Bob Roll.
Details on course routes, additional teams and men’s and women’s riders will be provided later this spring.
Colorado Classic 2017 men's teams:
UCI World Teams
BMC Racing Team
Cannondale-Drapac Professional Cycling Team
UAE Team Emirates
UCI Professional Continental Teams
Caja Rural-Seguros RGA
Israel Cycling Academy
Team Novo Nordisk
UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team
UCI Continental Teams
Axeon Hagens Berman
Elevate - KHS
Holowesko/Citadel Racing p/b Hincapie Sportswear
Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis