Brevard, N.C. - The Brevard College Cycling team will be back in action this week as they travel to Ogden, Utah for the 2012 USA Cycling Collegiate Road National Championships from May 4 – 6.
Close to 500 student-athletes representing nearly 100 colleges and universities are expected to compete for the 18 national titles up for grabs. Stars-and-Stripes jerseys will be awarded in the team time trial, criterium and road race for each gender in both Divisions I and II categories, which are based on school size. Individual and the team omnium titles will also be handed out in each division.
Competition begins Friday with the team time trial on Antelope Island. Set in the middle of the Great Salt Lake, Antelope Island features an abundance of wildlife and scenic views of the mainland. Teams will contest a 32-kilometer, out-and-back course that features a mix of rolling terrain and steady climbs.
On May 5, Collegiate Road Nationals will be the center of attention in Ogden as riders head downtown to compete in the criterium. The 1.6-kilometer course features eight corners per lap, passing landmarks such as City Hall Park and the Ogden Amphitheater. The women’s races will begin the Saturday afternoon competitions with two 60-minute crits, followed by the men’s races, which will last 75 minutes.
On Saturday evening, an awards banquet will be held downtown at Union Station. Podium ceremonies for both the team time trial and criteriums will honor the recently crowned national champions.
Concluding the three-day event is the road race on Sunday, May 6. The roads around Pineview Reservoir in Ogden Valley will play host to these races, which consist of a 101-kilometer course for women and a 125-kilometer course for men. Each race starts with several fast laps around the reservoir before descending into Ogden Canyon and toward the city.
As the race nears the finish, however, the road begins to go up. A category 5 climb (1.5 miles at 3 percent grade) is followed shortly after by a category 1 climb (four miles averaging 7.3 percent grade). The last several miles will be a heart-pounding descent as riders head back down toward the reservoir and the final finish line of the event.
For updated news, course maps, a schedule of events, and more visit the 2012 USA Cycling Collegiate Road National Championships page. You can also follow the event on Twitter using the hashtag #CollNats, or visit the Collegiate Road Nationals Facebook page for information on the races as well as ancillary events in Ogden.