The US has seen different iterations of cycling series’ throughout the years, but the announcement of the National Cycling League today has something a little bit different: Celebrity backers and big dollars behind it, before it’s even begun.
In a press release , the National Cycling League (NCL) announced the launch of a first-of-its-kind professional cycling league, in order to capitalize on the bike boom taking place in the U.S. Beginning in 2023, the NCL plans to organize a series of closed-course criterium races in the most iconic locations of major cities in the US, including Miami, Atlanta, Denver and Chicago, with a championship team decided at the end of the season and awarded the “largest prize in the history of criterium racing.” (Details are sparse on exact prize purses and team structure at the time of launch.)
“Our mission is to create the next generation sports community by reimagining sports ownership, fan participation, and social impact,” Paris Wallace, a serial entrepreneur and co-founder and CEO of the NCL, said in the release. “The NCL will be the first major professional sports league that is majority-minority and female owned and values men’s and women’s athletic achievements and contributions equally.” Jalen Ramsey is one of the National Cycling League’s initial investors. One of the top goals of the league will be to ensure equality between men’s and women’s fields, with equal pay and equal resources. Criteriums are ideal for gender parity, since running separate races on the same day is a simpler […]