The Tour of Utah cycle race -- "America's Toughest Stage Race" -- will take the state by storm August 7 - 12. UPR's Kerry Bringhurst spoke to Steve Miller, the Tour's president, to find out just how excited we should be about this event coming to Utah.
Six of the world's top 15 international cycling teams have committed to the race that will see some changes this year, says Miller.
"One of the objectives that we have as organizers of an event like this is to keep it fresh and engaging and interesting for both the sponsors and the spectators and certainly the teams. We don't want to race on the same course year after year...so we've shaken things up this year. The overall race start will be in Ogden, which we've never done before."
No doubt, wherever they're riding, the cyclists are going to see some beautiful scenery. Miller explains that these racers have been racing the same courses in Europe their whole lives. Now that racing is taking a hold in the U.S., "racers are wanting to race some new terrain. Especially when they can couple that with a visit to the United States. It's not a tough sell. They really enjoy coming here."
The race will be televised live nationally for 2 hours per day. Over the course of 6 days, That's 12 hours of TV coverage to showcase the scenery of Utah.
Miller says spectators around Utah can expect excitement. The event is free to the public and spectators are encouraged to stand anywhere along the course and cheer on the racers.
"To see these athletes in action is really remarkable...the sound of the carbon wheels on the road..the speed at which these guys travel...it's amazing."
It takes a lot of coordination to present a statewide event like the Tour of Utah. Volunteers are needed throughout the state. Sign up to volunteer at tourofutah.com.