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Davis club sponsors junior criterium as ancillary event to the Amgen Tour of California

As an ancillary event of the 2009 Amgen Tour of California, the Davis Bike Club will hold criterium bike races for junior cyclists between the ages of 10 and 18 on 15 February 2009 beginning at 12:15 PM in Central Park in Downtown Davis, CA. The cycling race, entitled the Davis Junior Criterium, will commence immediately following the start of Stage 1 of the Amgen Tour of California in Davis, CA and will be viewed by thousands of spectators.

The Davis Bike Club will promote the Davis Junior Criterium on Sunday, 15 February 2009.

The Davis Junior Criterium races will be held as an ancillary event of the Amgen Tour of California (http://www.amgentourofcalifornia.com) start of Stage 1 in Davis, California. Races will begin at approximately 12:15 PM PST at Central Park in Downtown Davis, CA, just after the professional Amgen Tour of California racers embark on two neutral loops around downtown Davis and then depart Davis for Stage 1 of the Amgen Tour of California, en route to the finish of Stage 1 in Santa Rosa, CA.

Three races will comprise the 2009 Davis Junior Criterium. The first race, commencing at approximately 12:15 pm will be designated for 10-14 year old males and females. Males and females will race together, but will be placed separately in male and female 10-12 and 13-14 age categories. The second race will be a female-only race for girls aged 15-18 years of age. The event will be concluded with a male-only race for boys aged 15-18 years of age. In the latter two races, 15-16 and 17-18 year olds will be placed separately in their respective categories.

“Here in California, we have a number of exceptional Junior development programs – from the Davis Bike Club, Team Swift, Tieni Duro, Team Specialized, the expanding NorCal High School Mountain Bike League, to the Hellyer Velodrome track racing program (to name but a few!). The future of the sport is being heavily invested in by grassroots organizations of our state. Highlighting youth with the Davis Junior Criterium will be yet another way of showcasing the great work being done by folks in the communities that help put on the Amgen Tour of California. I’m proud to be a part of this event.” Michael Hernandez, Announcer for the Davis Junior Criterium, and Editor of NorCalCyclingNews (http://norcalcyclingnews.com).

Junior racers in the Davis Junior Criterium will be competing under the same start stage and props provided to the Amgen Tour of California professional racers. In addition, Williams Cycling (http://www.williamscycling.com) will be generously providing neutral wheel support with Junior gearing for all Junior races.

Racers in the Davis Junior Criterium will navigate around Central Park in Davis, California amongst thousands of spectators. The course will be a 0.5 mile rectangular loop with 4 right turns. The Start/Finish Line will be on C Street (between 3rd and 4th Streets), right turn onto 3rd Street, right turn onto B Street, right turn onto 5th Street, and final right turn onto C Street for the sprint finish. USAC official, and Davis resident, Paula Mara will be on hand to serve as the Chief Referee for the Davis Junior Criterium.

10-14 year old males and females will race for 20 minutes, 15-18 year old females will race for 30 minutes, and 15-18 year old males will race for 40 minutes. The course will be completely closed to automobile and pedestrian traffic. Spectators will be lining the course and providing cheers and enthusiasm. This will be an excellent opportunity to view up-and-coming cyclists in action.

Jason Eiserich, Director of the Davis Junior Criterium and Assistant Director of the Davis Bike Club Race Team commented “The Davis Bike Club has a long standing tradition of supporting Junior cycling/racing, and we are proud to promote such a prestigious and exciting event for the Junior racers. Our goal is to provide an opportunity for Junior racers to become ‘active’ participants in the Amgen Tour of California festivities, showcase their talents, and allow them to race amongst the huge crowds that will be on site for the Start of Stage 1 of the Amgen Tour of California in Davis.”

The event is open to all Junior cyclists between the ages of 10 and 18, male and female. Robin Rolles, Director of the Davis Bike Club Race Team, further comments that “The Davis Bike Club and the Davis Bike Club Race Team hopes that this event will attract not only Junior racers from our District, but will hopefully recruit Junior cyclists from outside of the NorCal/Nevada Cycling Association (NCNCA) to venture over to Davis on 15 February to take part in this very exciting event and take in the excitement of the Amgen Tour of California.”

Prizes will be given to the top six (6) racers in each category, and will be awarded on the Amgen Tour of California Start Stage. Minimum prize values will be $200 for 10-14 age group (male and female), $500 for 15-18 year old males, and $500 for 15-18 year old females. Prizes will come in the form of custom event medals, cash (minimum of 50%), and merchandise. Outstanding ‘prime’ prizes, given to the racers finishing first and second on a given lap, will be awarded during the races. Championship jerseys, generously provided by Voler Custom Cycling Apparel (http://www.voler.com) will be awarded to the winners of each junior category. Additionally, all registered racers will be provided with a custom event T-shirt and a custom event musette bag full of goodies, including a custom event water bottle.

The Davis Junior Criterium will be part of the Northern California/Nevada Cycling Association (NCNCA) Junior Point Series, one of the premier Junior development programs in the USA. “The Davis Bike Club and City of Davis have really come together to create a spectacular event for Junior cyclists. This is the first time that Juniors have had a chance to compete in a race associated with the Tour of California, and the Northern California-Nevada Cycling Association (NCNCA) is excited to be a part of this event. NCNCA’s supportive yet competitive environment has helped many Junior cyclists become top-ranked riders and National Champions, some of which have gone on to professional cycling teams. All of us at NCNCA are looking forward to the first stage in Davis, and the entire 2009 Tour of California” says Greg Van den Dries, Director of the NCNCA Junior Point Series.

“This will be the premier NCNCA Junior Point Series event in the California Central Valley. Fierce competition will be displayed by the best teenage cyclists of Northern California and beyond. Come see the pro peleton off as they start the Amgen Tour of California, then see tomorrows stars race through the streets of Davis today.” says Mike Pugh, Davis Bike Club Juniors Race Team Co-Director.

Online registration for the Davis Junior Criterium is now open and will close on 12 February 2009. Individuals wishing to enter the event can do so online at SportsbaseOnline: https://www.sportsbaseonline.com/Item.aspx?id=3012. Registration cost will be $12 per racer prior to the deadline of 12 February. Day of race registration fees will increase to $18. 2009 Annual USAC licences are required. One-day USAC licences can be purchased for $10 online or at the registration site in Davis (Central Park) on the day of the race.

The Davis Bike Club proudly presents the Davis Junior Criterium as a continuing effort to promote cycling and a healthy lifestyle to the youth of our communities.

For further information or to conduct interviews and/or photo/video/audio segments, please contact:

Jason Eiserich
Director, Davis Junior Criterium
Davis Bike Club Race Team; http://www.dbcraceteam.org