Pennsylvania congressman announces plans for new race in Philadelphia

“As long as there is a Wall in Manayunk there will be a world-class cycling event in Philadelphia," says lawmaker

PHILADELPHIA (VN) — The Wall shall rise again, if Rep. Bob Brady (D-Pa) has anything to say about it.

The Philadelphia International Cycling Championship, scheduled for June 2, was deemed a non-starter this year, according to David Chauner, who cited rising costs and declining sponsorship.

“We are disappointed that we must remove the race from the calendar in 2013, but we feel that we will be able to reorganize with new partners and make this the preeminent event the region deserves in 2014 and beyond,” said  Chauner, a former Olympic cyclist and one of the creators of the event.

But on Thursday, Brady announced the formation of an organization to put on a new race for 2013, the Philly Cycling Classic.

“The mayor has called for a premier cycling event and the team we have pulled together intends to deliver nothing less for the City of Philadelphia in 2013,” Brady said in a statement. “As long as there is a Wall in Manayunk there will be a world-class cycling event in Philadelphia.”

The organization for the proposed event, which would use the same date as the postponed Philadelphia International Cycling Championship, does not include Chauner, according to

The team does include Alan Morrison, founder of the Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon in 2005; Richard Adler, head of Philadelphia Triathlon, LLC; Karen Bliss, vice president of marketing for Advanced Sports International; Ryan Oelkers, co-founder of the Cadence Cycling Foundation; Bob Clowry, a Manayunk-based businessman and certified cycling coach; and Jane Lipton, executive director of the Manayunk Development Corporation.

Race director will be Robin Morton of G4 Productions.

Morton said organizers had informed USA Cycling and the UCI “of our intent to keep the June 2, 2013, date in Philadelphia for a premier cycling event and look forward to their sanctioning this event in the near future.”

She added that “our vision for 2013 and beyond is a more spectator-friendly and technically challenging course than past races.”

The race that became the Philadelphia International Cycling Championship debuted in 1985 as the CoreStates USPRO Championship, won by Eric Heiden. It was the first official U.S. national road racing championship for 20 years and quickly became one of Philadelphia’s biggest special events, drawing top racers from 30 nations, huge crowds and a national television audience.