Southeast cyclists will be clipping or strapping into their assorted brands of bicycling shoes and pedal cages in one of the most scenic riding events in the area when the 2012 Tour of Juneau begins on Friday.
A few interesting route changes will make for better viewing and increased competition. One deviation is a switch from the regular Prologue course at Montana Creek Road to a one-mile flat race at the Mendenhall Glacier. This all-out Time Trial will have racers in an anaerobic state and seeing stars at the end. Most racers have trained for this portion with sprints from a standing start that last one to two minutes, with a full recovery before attempting another one. Only seconds will separate the top competitors at the end of this event.
Next on the tour is the classic, and fan favourtie, Eaglecrest Hill Climb. This 4.5-mile rising climb up the mountain has interesting opportunites for break-a-ways. This is the first time riders will be able to separate thmeselves from others for the overall classifications. Once again, repeats are the best way to train for this event and a prime training ground is Fish Creek Road, the site of the race. Other hills to work on would be the new cut above Auke Rec, Mountainside in Lemon Creek and the hills of T-Harbor and Shrine area.
Another new course for the Time Trial will liven things up. It adds an additional one-mile up Fish Creek Road. The Time Trial has a few more technical aspects with several deceleration and acceleration points on the course with turns and climbs. Several of the best hints for time trials is a steady pace, monitoring RPMs and aerodynamic position on the bike. A good way to train for a time trial is using aero bars and practicing the steady pace.
The Road Race final is a great way to settle the general classification winners. There are many places to make a break-a-way and hopefully take several riders with you to create distance from the pack. Fans enjoy standing at the loop points in the long course for viewing the action as it progresses. Riders generally train for this portion by riding with several friends to practice drafting, and sprinting in a group.
Note: Helmets are required. No iPods/music. No pets. Aerobars allowed on two events.
Stage 1 – One-Mile Prologue. Glacier Visitor’s Center, Friday, August 10th, 6:30 p.m. race start. Registration: 5:30 p.m. at bus parking lot at Mendenhall Glacier.
Prologue course: Starting at Mendenhall Glacier Visitors Center, riders will ride down Glacier Spur Road one mile. Aerobars are allowed in this event.
Stage 2 – 4.5-Mile Eaglecrest Hill Climb. Saturday, August 11th, 9 a.m. race start. Registration at 8 a.m. on Eaglecrest road, about one-half of a mile up the road before the first hill.
Eaglecrest Hill Climb Course: Mass start, start line about one-half mile up Eaglecrest road, finish line at the start of the ski area parking lot. No Aerobars allowed in this event.
Stage 3 – 13.4-Mile North Douglas Time Trial. Saturday, August 11th, 3 p.m. race start. Registration 2 p.m., Eaglecrest road, about one-half of a mile up the road before the first hill.
North Douglas Time Trail course: Start at Eaglecrest bus turnout, continue to end of North Douglas Highway, return and turn right on Eaglecrest Road. Finish area by registration. Aerobars are allowed in this event.
Stage 4 – 52-Mile long course or 32-Mile short course Eagle Beach Road Race. Sunday, August 13th, 10 a.m. race start. Registration at 9 a.m. at Auke Rec near the main cabin (mid-way in Auke Rec).
Eagle Beach Road Race course: Rolling start on Glacier Highway heading north from the Auke Bay ferry terminal. Turn around at past Eagle Beach, turn right on Auke Rec Old Highway and continue to totem pole. Long course does laps on Auke Rec loop. No Aerobars allowed.
* Prizes, Medals, and Ribbons for each stage and overall winnings Costs: Participation fee for event $10.00 / *$5.00 16 yrs & younger. License fee EC & RR each $10.00 / *Free for annual USCF license holders/ *$5.00 16 yrs & younger/ Membership - Single $15.00, Family - $20.00 (*All must be a member). Contact John McConnochie at 723-1876 or firstname.lastname@example.org.