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One of Colorado’s largest cycling races is doomed unless a sponsor emerges

One of Colorado’s largest cycling races is doomed unless a sponsor emerges

Women cyclists race through Golden during Stage 3 of the Colorado Classic in 2019. The race was not held the past two years because of…

Wednesday, Mar 09

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Women cyclists race through Golden during Stage 3 of the Colorado Classic in 2019. The race was not held the past two years because of the pandemic and will not survive without new corporate sponsorship. The Colorado Classic women’s bike race will go defunct unless a corporate sponsor emerges to save it, event founder Ken Gart said Tuesday in an unusual public plea for help.

The event was created in 2019 to showcase women’s cycling but was not held the past two years because of the pandemic. The event’s sponsor, VF Corp. (parent company of North Face, Timberland and Jansport), signed a two-year sponsorship deal after it moved its corporate headquarters to Denver, but that deal expired in 2020.

“If we are unable to attain the necessary investment, the Colorado Classic and its mission to champion inclusivity and gender equity for women’s cycling will be gone,” Gart said in an open letter to Colorado Classic supporters.

Colorado has a long history of supporting elite bicycle racing with large and enthusiastic crowds, but financing events is challenging because there is no way to charge admission for spectators at an event that can be spread out over dozens of miles.

Gart believes the only way to save the Colorado Classic and support women’s cycling is to create a national women’s cycling series, with the Colorado Classic serving as a four-day final event. That would require $3 million per year.

“I would like to see two-day races in six cities across the country, which would allow women […]

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