Texas Cycling Challenge
TEXAS PHOTOS Available - HERE
2013 Event Results: HERE
2012 Race Results: HERE
March 8, 2014 – Austin (Marble Falls), Texas
A premier cycling festival featuring the best of the Texas Hill Country – with something for everyone – rides and races, expo and post-event party.
People from all over America are discovering the charm of the Texas Hill Country … Austin, Fredericksburg and Luckenbach … BBQ, Willie Nelson and the live music capital of the world. This is the best Texas has to offer … clear streams, rolling hills, ranches, music and more miles of quiet paved country roads than anywhere else in America. This is where Lance Armstrong lived and trained. And this is where RAAM vet and former RAAM Race Director, Nick Gerlich, operates his “Texas Hell Week” – an early season training camp, attended by more RAAM vets than any other in the country. Y’all come on down, ride or race, experience Texas hospitality and have some fun!
Our goal is to promote cycling and the healthy lifestyle though a series of weekend events held across the USA. These events include rides and races for cyclists of all abilities. Each event affords the opportunity for cyclists and others to learn about endurance bicycle racing. And each event includes a race where solo racers may attempt to qualify and teams may tune up for the Race Across America. Sign up and come out for a weekend of fun.
A weekend of fun – 2 non-competitive rides (60 and 120 miles), 2 endurance races (200 and 400 miles), an expo and post-event party with awards, entertainment, food and drink. The 120-mile ride is a “Gran Fondo.”
What is a Gran Fondo?A Gran Fondo – Italian for “big ride” – is a long distance, mass participation cycling event – not a race – open to recreational and competitive cyclists. The Gran Fondo falls somewhere between a non-competitive century ride and a road race. All participants are timed. Riders may challenge themselves against the distance or the clock. The top riders compete against each other to finish first. Gran Fondos typically have more challenging courses – ours are no exception. Most importantly, they have big parties after the finish. Participants are usually not in a rush to get home. They regale each other with tales of glory over a hot meal and a cold beverage! Our Gran Fondo is no exception … come on out, ride and party!
Above and beyond a Gran Fondo, the next challenge: an intro into endurance racing!
The start/finish is located in Marble Falls 45 minutes NW of Austin. Start, finish and party at Marble Falls City Park on the shoreline of Lake Marble Falls and the Colorado River. The lakes and small towns along the Colorado River west of Austin are popular weekend retreats for the folks from Austin. Marble Falls offers easy access to the quiet roads of the Texas Hill Country.
Rides and Races
All rides and races have been designed to showcase the beautiful Texas Hill Country.
Choose the appropriate length and difficulty. All rides start at Marble Falls City Park. Riders will leave the Park, head south on US 281, cross the Colorado River, and head east on FM 2147. Marble Falls City Police will escort the riders from the Park to the FM 2147 turn-off. The 60-mile riders will ride quiet roads across rolling ranch land to Spicewood. The 60-mile riders head south to Cypress Mill and west through Round Mountain to FM 2147 where they will head back east along the south side of Lake LBJ passing through Horseshoe Bay and Cottonwood Shores on their route to the finish. After turning off US 281 onto FM 2147 the 120-mile Gran Fondo riders will head south taking back roads past Round Mountain and through Cypress Mill before turning west and heading deeper into the Hill Country toward Fredericksburg. Upon leaving Fredericksburg, the Gran Fondo riders head north and east to Willow City. After leaving Willow City they will continue north on quiet back roads through rolling ranch land across a low ridge to FM 2147 where they will follow the same route as the 60-mile riders past Lake LBJ to the finish.
Races. Races are open to solo, 2 and 4-person teams. Both races leave Marble Falls City Park,cross the Colorado River, and head west passing through Cottonwood Shores and Horseshoe Bay before turning southwestand heading deeper into the Hill Country. Both races are essentially large NE-SW oriented loops through the heart of the Hill Country.
The 200-mile race turns south before reaching Fredericksburg and heads to Luckenbach. Luckenbach, a local gathering place on the banks of Grape Creek, was memorialized in song by Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson. Riders continue south to Sisterdale, then west through Comfort to Kerrville, where they turn north toward Fredericksburg. The route passes just west of Fredericksburg, through Crabapple, passing by Enchanted Rock State Park to Llano, where it turns east back to Marble Falls. The 200-mile course features 10,000 feet of climbing. The 200-mile racers will have 17 hours to finish.
The 400-mile race follows the 200-mile route to roughly mile 42 where it heads west into Fredericksburg rather than south to Luckenbach. From Fredericksburg, riders head south through Grapetown and Sisterdale to Boerne, where they turn west to Bandera. The route continues west through Medina, Vanderpool and Leakey to Camp Wood. This section offers a series of steep climbs. At Camp Wood the route heads back north and east to Llano and back to Marble Falls. The 400-mile course features 20,000 feet of climbing. The 400-mile racers will have 34 hours to finish. The 400-mile race is a RAAM Qualifier.
The races are unsupported. There will be no aid stations or SAG support on the 200 and 400-mile courses. Bikes and support vehicles will be inspected. 200-mile racers may ride randonneur style (without crew), but must notify the Race Director prior to the event. The 400-mile racers must have a support crew. Riders and crew must follow Modified RAAM Rules. There will be race officials to insure compliance with race rules.
Route Maps, profiles and cue sheets
Races will be timed.
Where to Stay
1206 Highway 281 North
Marble Falls, Texas 78654
For Reservations please call Michelle Bell at Hotel Bell Housing 760-231-6691
What to Bring
March in the Hill Country is perfect cycling weather. March days are typically mild, warming and by the end of the month the Bluebonnets and Indian Paint Brush are blooming. Mornings can be foggy. The fog burns off giving way to bright sunny days. While sunny days are the norm, it’s not unusual to experience a rainy day in a week of cycling. So, be prepared for wide ranging conditions. Bring your rain gear just in case.
Event Store: Purchase Cycling Challenge merchandise at our on-line Store.
A portion of the proceeds from the Texas Cycling Challenge will be donated to non-profit organizations – to be announced.
The Texas Cycling Challenge is produced by Soul Events in conjunction with the Race Across America (RAAM). To learn more about RAAM visit raceacrossamerica.org . To learn more about Soul Events visit souleventsusa.com.