MONTROSE, Colo (KKCO) Officials are confident the race will help put Montrose on the map. 135 cyclists from all over the world will be going through Montrose. Organizers are bracing for up to 15,000 visitors, and hope many will stay long after the race ends.
The buzz is everywhere as stage two of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge rolls through Montrose. "I've been all over half the world, and all over America and Canada, and I've been nearby; but I've never been right here," says Scott Lybbert, who came to Montrose from California for business. Now he might extend his stay a little longer.
"We found out about the race; so we decided to do a little bit more work; and we're going to stay for the race, and we're going to see the area a little bit more," says Lybbert. And for scott, and countless others, the race won't disappoint.
"This is a big event, the biggest event that Montrose has seen," says Jenni Sobsic, from the Montrose organizing committee, a local organization responsible for planning the 2nd stage of the race.
Sobsic hopes it will raise awareness about the sport. "People are excited about cycling; they want to get involved with it; it's a healthy lifestyle," she says. The event takes enormous preparation. "There is a learning curve to this, but hopefully it's going to go off without a hitch," adds Sobsic.
Hotels are also hoping to benefit from the influx in traffic. "It's exciting, hopefully all the hotels get filled, and all the restaurants get filled; and hopefully it's some good exposure for Montrose," says Brandon Hert, General Manager of the Days Inn Hotel in Montrose.
And once the last racer has disappeared from view, locals hope people like Scott, will visit again. "Hopefully we get a lot of people coming back to Montrose to look deeper to what Montrose has to offer," says Hert.
That way, everyone wins. "I've made friends here, so I want to come back for that; but yeah, it's so pretty; it's prettier than other areas nearby, so yeah, I'd come back," says Lybbert.
The 2nd Annual Pro-Cycling Challenge runs through August 26th. The race will travel through 12 host cities from Durango to Denver.
More than 1 million people are expected to line up statewide to watch the race, with millions more watching the race on television worldwide.
To know more about the USA Pro Cycling Challenge, visit www.usaprocyclingchallenge.com.