Montréal to host Canada’s first UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup leg

Montréal to host Canada’s first UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup leg

Montreal (Quebec) January 30, 2015It’s now official: On Saturday, September 19, 2015, Montréal will host the Union Cycliste Internationale’s first-ever Cyclo-cross World Cup on Canadian soil, right after Las Vegas opens the 2015-2016 season. Cyclo-cross athletes will travel from Europe to North America to start the UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup season.

Cyclo-cross is a relatively unknown bicycling discipline in North America, but is nearly 100 years old in parts of Europe. Athletes cycle through extreme terrain, at times hopping off their bicycles and carrying it – on foot – over terrain too difficult for bicycles to cover. Racers also draw support of a pit crew of sorts, with mechanics able to repair and maintain bicycles that get covered in mud or damaged by falls. In a pinch, racers can even change bicycles mid-race.

“I’m delighted the second round of the 2015-2016 UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup will be taking us to Montréal,” commented UCI President Brian Cookson. “It shows that cyclo-cross is becoming more international after Louisville hosted the UCI World Championships for the first time in 2013. A new phase has now begun in North America with the first round of the UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup to ever be organized in Canada. With Montréal following Las Vegas to open the season, these events are pushing back the discipline’s geographic boundaries.”

For the first time in the sport’s history, Montréal will have the opportunity to host the world’s elite, with more than 200 athletes from 20 countries. Canadians will also be able to perform in front of a home crowd: big names in the world of mountain biking like Maghalie Rochette, Catharine Pendrel, and Geoff Kabush should be on the start line.

Gestev is well known for bringing sporting events to downtown locations and will be in the vanguard again as it puts on the UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup event in the heart of the city, in an iconic location of the metropolis. The exact location will be announced in the upcoming weeks. Very technical, the 3 km long course combining natural and artificial surfaces, asphalt, sand, and stairs requires athletes to show a great deal of agility for about an hour. Obstacles scattered across the course will force cyclists to leave the saddle and carry their bikes over their shoulders, adding to the excitement. “In Europe, cyclo-cross events celebrate cycling for all, and that’s what we’re aiming for in Montréal,” said Patrice Drouin, president of event producer Gestev.

More details on the event will follow in the months to come.

Categories: Sports, Upcoming Events

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