USA Pro Challenge Bike Race Rockets Thru Downtown Denver

Yesterday (August 25) downtown Denver was really Bike City USA as the final stage of the USA Pro Challenge raced through the downtown streets. Thousands of spectators lined the eight-lap, 72.4-mile circuit to make noise and create a colorful party atmosphere for dozens of urban blocks.

Tejay van Garderen, age 25, finished in the main pack to maintain a 1 minute 30 second lead and earn the overall victory. Another stand-out and fan favorite, 23-year-old Peter Sagan of Slovakia out-sprinted the field to earn his fourth stage victory and wrap up a spot as Top Sprinter.

I hit the streets to capture the scene, spectators and racers alike.

—Photos by Sean McCoy

Tejay van Garderen on the USA Pro Challenge podium with his daughter Rylan

The ubiquitous Colorado flag and cowbell

Racers roll down Speer Boulevard

American flags fly frequently in the crowd over the very international field

Most downtown streets were closed to cars for the race, so be sure to bring a bike

The peloton charges through the course

More cowbell!

Don’t forget to bring a camera or four

Clark Kent would be proud

Racers accelerate out of a corner at the USA Pro Challenge

A tough cycling goal on the “Before I Die” billboard in Denver

A well prepared spectator: note program, cycling hat, water bottle, helmet, backpack and jersey

Team cars chase the pack of the USA Pro Challenge

Racers pass the Denver Convention Center and “The Dancers”

If you happen to have a pair of these sweet bike glasses, by all means wear them

Don’t forget your swimsuit?

Also don’t forget a friend for the back half of your tandem

Yep, be sure to bring friends or make some new ones

Plenty of enthusiasm and a strong voice help along the course

Peter Sagan’s enormous cutout was popular along the course

Flair, wear plenty of flair

MORE COWBELL!

A message from some race officials

Dreams for next year

—Photos by Sean McCoy.

By

Managing Editor Sean McCoy is a life-long outdoorsman who grew up hunting and fishing central Wisconsin forests and lakes. He joined GearJunkie after a 10-year stint as a newspaperman in the Caribbean, where he learned sailing and wooden-boat repair. Based in Denver, McCoy is an avid trail runner, camper, hunter, angler, mountain biker, skier, and beer tester.