In its 11th year of operation, the toughest staged race in the country will kick off in Cache Valley next summer, Tour of Utah officials announced Tuesday.
The first stage of the race with begin in Logan on August 3. This new location is the furthest north the tour has traveled, with the previous record being held by Ogden.
Director of the Cache Valley Visitors Bureau Julie Hollist said this is an incredible opportunity for the community.
“The community itself will receive a lot of notoriety and exposure through the media for this event," Hollist said. "We’ll also have quite a big economic impact that I think we’ll be feeling from the riders and all their entourages being here, and I think there is just some general excitement involved that will be fun adrenaline for us to have such a large-scale event being hosted in our community."
Race officials told media that the Tour of Utah has had a $20 million impact on the state, 20 percent of this increase coming from outside of Utah.
Hollist said the community is fully engaging to take on the daunting task of preparing for the race.
“As far as tourism goes, we’re in the middle of the Utah Festival Opera season and just a high tourism time for us,” Hollist said. “Other logistics as far as everything from how much power they need and where they need to be able to have press conferences held to what meals need to be provided when and where, I mean it’s everything from that to the security services and medical services and where they’re going to put the porta-potties. It’s just huge!”
Utah State University has jumped on board with the Logan community to help make the race possible and have agreed to house the 19 teams participating in the event, according to Steve Jenson, executive director of USU Housing and Residence Life.
“This is a great event for the university to be involved in because we are a member of this community, and so it’s really important that we try to provide support for the community as best as we can,” Jenson said.
This year’s route change comes after the tour increased the race from a six to seven day event in 2014. Past race cycles have covered around 600 miles and climbed up to 38,000 feet.