Event Recap: Nature Valley Grand Prix

For us one of the sure signs that summer has truly “arrived” is when the fast bikes and professional riders of the Nature Valley Grand Prix roll into town.

While year-to-year many of the stages stay the same, this year there were some fresh changes that continued to keep this event relevant and interesting for all those who came out.  Here’s a re-cap of what happened:

Stage 1: River Road Time Trial:

Stage 2: St. Paul Crit:

Be sure to check out our photo and video re-cap here.

Stage 3: Cannon Falls Road Race:

Unfortunately the torrential rains (as much as 9 inches overnight) forced the cancellation of this stage.  This is the second time in three years that this is happened, hopefully next year the folks in Cannon Falls will get a chance to see the show.

Stage 4: Uptown Crit:

Usually the most popular and packed stage, the race returned to Uptown for some mighty fast racing.

Stage 5: Menomonie Road Race: 

This turned out to be the longest race of this year’s edition and saw the eventual race winner (Tom Zirbel) re-take the leader’s jersey.

Stage 6: Stillwater:

Ah yes, that hill.  They ride it over and over, oh so exciting.

Local connections:

So besides the fact that the race is hosted here in the Twin Cities, there are also several local connections that helped to make this race even more local.

This year saw two amateur teams be included with all local racers.  Both the Freewheel Bike and Twin Six teams ended up with riders through the final day, which when you consider all of these men and women also have day jobs is a pretty exiting aspect.

In addition to these teams, the pro team with eventual winner Tom Zirbel, Optum Pro Cycling are based right here in the Twin Cities.

Hopefully everyone (fans especially) enjoyed themselves this year and hope to see the race back for another installment next year.

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One Response to Event Recap: Nature Valley Grand Prix

  1. barton says:

    I LOVE that Lululemon jersey! I totally want one!

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