Tough New Queen Stage Finish Climb and Classic Time Trial Course Mark Sages 4 and 5 as 2013 USA Pro Challenge Returns to Beaver Creek and Vail August 22-23

25 April 2013
VAIL, Colorado--The 2013 edition of the USA Pro Challenge will return to its roots August 22 and 23 as the world’s best cyclists face a tough new finish climb into Beaver Creek before once again doing battle with the iconic Vail Time Trial course.
     Announced April 25, the route for this summer’s tour will encompass eight cities throughout Colorado, kicking off in Aspen on August 19 and culminating in downtown Denver on August 25.  Stage 4 from Steamboat to Beaver Creek will take place on August 22, while the Vail Time Trial will take center stage on August 23.
     “We are excited to have Beaver Creek back on the schedule for the finish of Stage 4, especially with the resort being part of the Queen Stage,” explained Ceil Folz, president of the Vail Valley Foundation and president of the Vail and Beaver Creek local organizing committee.  “This entire community has a long and storied history in cycling and we are honored to be able to expand on that legacy through the USA Pro Challenge.”
     “We are also extremely pleased to be able to bring the Time Trial back to Vail,” Folz added.  “Not only was it one of the most exciting and historic stages of the inaugural tour, but it is also a very challenging course for the riders, given its uphill nature.”
     One thing is for certain, the road to the final podium in Denver goes straight over Beaver Creek’s Bachelor Gulch. A new start in Steamboat will send the race off into Routt County, with this roller coaster of small hills giving way to a gentle route south, prior to the racers climbing up from the river bottom at State Bridge.
     That’s just the beginning, as the new approach to Beaver Creek will now send the racers up the new Bachelor Gulch climb.  While it may not be the longest or most well-known climb, it is quite possibly the toughest. The relentless grade, with pitches up to 18 percent, will do real damage and create the sort of epic racing for which the Pro Challenge is known. After topping Bachelor Gulch, the leaders still have to race down a technical descent and power up the final 2 kilometer climb to Beaver Creek Village.
     Last August, Germany’s Jen’s Voigt surprised the entire field in Stage 4, jumping out to solo breakaway just prior to the summit of Independence Pass and holding a two-minute lead all the way to the finish line in Beaver Creek.  As the German approached the finish line, race fans jammed into Beaver Creek Village and lined the 2.5-mile final climb, located just beyond the skier bridge.
     The last time the USA Pro Challenge visited Vail, the Time Trial was decided by 58 hundredths of a second. The course’s roots are legendary in Colorado racing lore and trace back to the Coors Classic.
     Starting in Vail and climbing most of the way up Vail Pass, the route is no easy proposition, even for the best racers on earth. The gentle grades of the first half of the course give way to a steady climb for the last three miles. But it takes more than legs on this strategic course; go too hard early and the climb may kill your chances, but conserve too much for the climb and the leaderboard may be out of reach.
     Two years ago, eventual tour champion Levi Leipheimer, essentially solidified his overall victory with a win in the Vail Time Trial, edging runner-up Christian Vande Velde to take the win and the lifetime Vail/Beaver Creek season pass.
     “The most important thing to us in creating the route for the 2013 USA Pro Challenge was to find a course that would be safe and challenging for the riders, while providing ideal viewing locations for the crowds of spectators,” said Shawn Hunter, CEO of the USA Pro Challenge. “This year we are, once again, taking them to the highest point of any professional cycling race with Independence Pass. We’re also returning to the iconic Time Trial route in Vail. The best in the sport will be racing through Colorado communities for what will be an epic week in professional cycling.”
     The Vail and Beaver Creek stages of the 2013 U.S. Pro Cycling Challenge will be organized through a collaborative effort involving the Vail Valley Foundation, the Town of Vail, Vail Resorts, the Beaver Creek Resort Company and cycling enthusiasts throughout the Vail Valley.
About the USA Pro Challenge
     Referred to as “America’s Race,” the USA Pro Challenge will take place August 19-25, 2013 and travel through eight host cities from Aspen to Denver. For seven consecutive days, the world’s top athletes race through the majestic Colorado Rockies, reaching higher altitudes than they’ve ever had to endure. After attracting more than 1 million spectators in 2012, making it one of the largest cycling events in U.S. history and the largest spectator event in the history of the state, the USA Pro Challenge is back for 2013. Featuring a challenging, 599-mile course, the third annual race will spotlight the best of the best in professional cycling and some of America’s most beautiful scenery.
     More information can be found online at and on Twitter at @USAProChallenge. 

Media Contact:    John Dakin
                            (970) 777-2015

About Vail Resorts
Vail Resorts, Inc., through its subsidiaries, is the leading mountain resort operator in the United States. The Company's subsidiaries operate the mountain resorts of Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood in the Lake Tahoe area of California and Nevada; Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mt. Brighton in Michigan; and the Grand Teton Lodge Company in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The Company's subsidiary, RockResorts, a luxury resort hotel company, manages casually elegant properties. Vail Resorts Development Company is the real estate planning, development and construction subsidiary of Vail Resorts, Inc. Vail Resorts is a publicly held company traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: MTN). The Vail Resorts company website is and consumer website is
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