Tour de Nez race returns to Truckee this Friday
Ladies and gentleman, start your pedals ” the 15th annual Tour de Nez is rolling into Truckee Friday.
Somewhat scaled back from recent years, the two day event will visit both Truckee and Reno. A new partnership however promises to see the race grow in future years, with ambitions spanning across Lake Tahoe.
“This year we have two criteriums,” said Tim Healion, race director for the Tour de Nez. “As far as the visual impact of the sport for spectators ” criteriums are referred to as US-style racing.”
Criteriums, a fast-pace race with many laps around a small course, have always been the backbone of the event that grew to include a longer Truckee-Tahoe road race and individual timed events, Healion said.
In past years, the race included an event +that lapped Highways 89, 267, and 28, but this year’s event has been scaled back.
“We may have been getting a little too big for our breeches,” Healion said. “We were working beyond our means.”
Healion maintains that the race will be a targeted race for pro-level riders, and says competing teams this year include the country’s top domestic squads, as well as the Colombian National Team.
And all the fun extras will be maintained this year, including hand cycling races, kid’s races, clunker classics, and a block party he said.
“This is not just a pro race ” it is a festival of cycling,” Healion said.
Despite the more modest event list this year, Healion said he has big plans in the works that will be made possible by a partnership with Northstar-at-Tahoe.
Northstar will not only act as a venue for future Tour de Nez races, but also act as a financial partner he said, which will be important with rising costs.
“Last year California Highway Patrol wanted $26,500 to run the road race, this year they wanted to double that,” Healion said. “We can’t afford to do that without significant partners, so in comes East West Partners and Northstar.”
Healion said while he plans to maintain the Truckee and Reno events, the new partnership will add a race at Northstar, and maybe even a course connecting Sierra-at-Tahoe to Northstar from one end of the lake to the other.
Northstar spokesperson Kirstin Cattell said the resort will only have a booth at the Truckee event this year, but plans on expanding the race next year, basing the event out of the village and running a circuit race through the local roads.
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