First Ever Rapha Northwest Classic Juniors Stage Race is a Huge Success!
by Laurie O'Brien
On July 28th and 29th, while most of the world had their eyes trained on London and the opening days of the Olympics, some of the best young cyclists in the western United States and Canada converged on Elma, Washington for the first ever Rapha Northwest Classic Juniors Stage Race. Riders came from Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Utah, California, and British Columbia to test themselves against their peers.
The brain-child of Revel Consulting-Rad Racing Northwest director, Jim Brown, and Washington race promoter, Erik Anderson, the goal of the event was to support the growth and development of junior riders in the region.
For years, Brown had been the driving force behind the Rad Racing Grand Prix, a September cyclocross race that drew national and international athletes to the area. In 2011, personal events caused him to shift his focus. "Last summer when my dad died, I had to pull the plug on doing the cross race," said Brown. "I was just too consumed with taking care of family stuff. While on a bike ride last August I was reflecting on where I wanted to put my energy in 2012. It seemed that the UCI Cross thing might not be a fit anymore for our club. There was a great need to make better racing opportunities for juniors on the road. We needed to do a stage race. The second I got in the door from my ride, I called Erik."
Anderson jumped on board from the get-go. Both men recognized that all too often, junior categories are added as an afterthought to adult races, and those young riders strong enough to race senior categories, never really get the chance to compare themselves to other juniors except at national championship events. The Northwest Classic would focus only on juniors. Read More ...