Thursday, April 28, 2011

Roswell Cycling Festival - Alive and Rolling

If you’ve noticed decorated bicycles around Roswell, you’ve experienced the Moving Parts of the Arts from the Roswell Cycling Festival. Local artists and businesses decorate bicycles and place them out to celebrate cycling in Roswell.

This Saturday, 4/30, the festival kicks off in high gear with the Roswell Cycling Festival Mountain Bike Day at Big Creek Park - Big Creek Pump Track Event, starting at 10 am. Riders of every age are welcome to come out to Big Creek to experience the 2 new pump tracks, one for beginners and the other for intermediate/advance riders. The pump tracks are small, circular courses with berms and rollers professionally built to teach kids and adults the skills necessary to safely participate in true off road trails. Skills clinics on the Roswell Bike Big Creek Pump Track, sponsored by RAMBO and Roswell Bicycles, will continue all day long, and teaching the skills clinic will be provided by our Downhill Team.

Sunday is the Historic Roswell Criterium. Speed, spectators, scenery – Historic Roswell Criterium has it all. Check out for full details on the races and all of the weekend’s events.

Never heard of a Criterium? According to the Criterium’s website, a Criterium is:
The most common form of American racing, the criterium, is a multi-lap race of 25 to 60 miles held on a closed course generally a mile or less in length. These races, which usually last one to two hours, are extremely fast -- 30 mph and up -- as the cyclists jockey for position and sprint for lap “primes” (cash or merchandise prizes, pronounced “preems”). The short closed course, generally with both right- and left-hand corners, makes this type of racing easy to watch for spectators and more accessible for the media.In criteriums, it’s “go” from the gun as the strong riders force the pace and the weaker ones struggle to hang on. Quick acceleration and bike-handling ability are paramount -- a successful criterium rider will be able to dive into a tight corner at high speed, leaning the bike over at a gravity-defying angle, then power out of the turn and instantly set up for the next. It’s important to stay near the front; the first few riders in a pack can take a corner with little or no braking. Those toward the back jockey for the best “line” through the turn, brake, then sprint to catch up with the pack as it accelerates, developing an “accordion” effect.

Race Times: Races begin at 11 am and the last race of the day is an 80 minute professional race that begins at 6 pm. There is even a children’s race where children who complete the 3-5 pm Bicycle Safety Rodeo come out on the professional track for a 200 yard race.

Spectators will gather all along the route so bring your chairs and come prepared for a fun day. For those who prefer retail therapy over sports, part of the race route is right next to a quaint shopping district on Canton Street. Art, antiques, gifts, clothing, and many one of a kind items are found in the shops in the area, as well as fun restaurants, coffee houses, and tea rooms. There’s something for all ages to enjoy.

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