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Rock stars join racers at the Harlem Cycling Classic

Bahati is interviewed after taking second in the Harlem Rocks crit.

Bahati is interviewed after taking second in the Harlem Rocks crit. (Image credit: Vero Image)

Rockstar Games will host the 37th annual Skyscraper Harlem Cycling Classic, a series of criteriums for children and professionals held on June 20 in New York City.

The event is designed to inspire the youth and bring together the surrounding community for a day of festivities that includes live music from hip-hop performers Biz Markie and Mister Cee.

“It's an honor for us to be involved with the Harlem Skyscraper Classic for a second time,” said Sam Houser, Founder of Rockstar Games. “We think the event is a really fun way to bring together a community of cyclists and their families, and many of us at Rockstar are die-hard cyclists, so we are really excited to be able to support it in any way we can.”

The late David Walker, an NYPD Community Affairs Officer, founded the event to encourage the city's children to get more exercise and learn to lead more active lifestyles. The day will host a series of children’s races designed to bring an element of fun and introduce the kids to competitive cycling.

The New York City Mayor's Office has recognized David Walker's vision and designated the children's races as official NYC Mayor's Cup Events for the "Fastest Bicycle Riders” in New York City.

The event also includes a professional men’s race that will host Olympic Champion Walter Perez of Argentina and four-time World Champion Franco Marvulli along with German track racing stars Leif Lampater and Christian Grasmann.

“The Skyscraper Harlem Cycling Classic has served its host community for 37 years by providing a free, world class sporting event designed to inspire children to ride bicycles,” said Race Director, John Eustice. “The winners of the races all receive new bicycles for their accomplishments. So the race serves as a true community event, bringing positive family activities and world class pro racing excitement to Harlem.”

The festivities will include live performances by hip-hop icons Biz Markie and Mister Cee amongst other performers. It will offer a taste of New York City's famed Wafels & Dinges along with Frites & Meats food trucks that will be serving at the event.

“The true American racing model, the one invented over 100 years ago, and the one that became the richest sport in the world for almost a 40-year period, was based out of New York City,” Eustice said.

“The famed 6-day races in Madison Square Garden were rich, glamorous events. Singing stars from Tin Pan Alley would break out their new hits at the 6-day events. Politicians, actors, hi and low lives, Al Capone once fronted the money for the Chicago 6-Day. They would all converge to enjoy the carnival atmosphere of racers spinning around with speed and daring, while the crowds ate, danced partied in the middle.”

NYC Media will air the races live on NYC Life Channel 25.