Domestic Intel: USA Pro Challenges launches amateur events; Hausler takes NRC lead

Austrian Tibco rider takes command in National Racing Calendar; Colorado race to host ride, running race

USA Pro Challenge expands to amateur events

USA Pro Challenge organizers announced Wednesday that the Colorado stage race would expand in 2013 to include two ancillary amateur events. A mass-participation ride, the Pro Challenge Experience will take place in stage 7 host city Fort Collins on Sunday, August 11. A running race, the 9K Sprint Challenge will take place in Downtown Denver on Sunday, August 25.

“By growing the Pro Challenge to include these amateur events the whole family can get involved,” CEO Shawn Hunter said in a release. “The 9K Sprint Challenge and the Pro Challenge Experience give fans the opportunity to get in on the action and race on part of the course the professional athletes will utilize just days or hours later during the Pro Challenge.”

With 30-, 52-, and 108-mile options, the Pro Challenge Experience will take in a number of northern Colorado climbs and dirt roads, including a run into the remote Cache la Poudre Canyon. Registration for the ride is available at the Pro Challenge Experience website.

The 9k Spring Challenge will precede the final-stage circuit race in Denver and will award not only prizes for fastest times, but also for best costumes. The route will start at Civic Center Park and take in Capitol Hill and a lap of City Park, near the Museum of Nature and Science. Registration is available at the 9K Spring Challenge website.

“We’re investing in the future of the sport and we want people to not only have the opportunity to witness the action of the USA Pro Challenge, but also experience it for themselves,” said Hunter. “We’re looking forward to bringing these and other events, in association with the Pro Challenge, to our fans for years to come.”

Mancebo, Hausler lead NRC standings

Claudia Häusler (Tibco-To the Top) took over the lead in the USA Cycling National Racing Calendar standings this week on the strength of her fourth-place finish at the Nature Valley Grand Prix on Sunday. Häusler displaced Alison Powers (NOW-Novartis for MS), who trails by 52 points and was not present in Minnesota.

Francisco Mancebo (5-hour Energy-Kenda) lost Canada’s Tour de Beauce over the weekend, but continues to lead the men’s NRC standings, 254 points ahead of Chad Haga (Optum-Kelly Benefit Strategies).

Tibco leads Optum by 352 points in the women’s team standings. Optum leads 5-hour Energy by 538 points in the men’s team standings with three events remaining in the series.

Men’s Individual Standings
1. Francisco Mancebo, 5-Hour Energy-Kenda), 674 points
2. Chad Haga, Optum-Kelly Benefit Strategies, 420
3. J.J. Haedo, Jamis-Hagens Berman, 336
4. Joseph Rosskopf, Hincapie Sportswear Development, 328
4. Tom Zirbel, Optum-Kelly Benefit Strategies, 328

Women’s Individual Standings
1. Claudia Häusler, Tibco-To the Top, 822 points
2. Alison Powers, NOW-Novartis for MS, 730
3. Shelley Olds, Tibco-To the Top, 688
4. Joelle Numainville, Optum-Kelly Benefit Strategies, 648
5. Mara Abbott, Exergy Twenty16, 490

Men’s Team Standings
1. Optum-Kelly Benefit Strategies, 1,506 points
2. 5-Hour Energy-Kenda, 968
3. Jamis-Hagens Berman, 966
4. UnitedHealthcare, 628
5. Hincapie Sportswear Development, 598

Women’s Team Standings
1. Tibco-To the Top, 1,918 points
2. Optum-Kelly Benefit Strategies, 1,566
2. NOW-Novartis for MS, 1,182
4. Exergy Twenty16, 778
5. Specialized-lululemon, 738