April 8, 2009 (Minneapolis, MN) — The Nature Valley Grand Prix women’s race is joining the men’s as an invitational in 2009. Both races filled in 2008, with teams being turned away. The men’s race had filled for the past five years, but this was a first for the women.
“The popularity of our women’s race has grown steadily”, said Nature Valley Grand Prix promoter David LaPorte. “We’re the third of four stops on the Women’s Prestige Cycling Series, a program that we coordinate. We’re also the destination event for two national women’s programs. The Women’s Collegiate All Stars will be selected at the USA Cycling Collegiate National Championships, held May 8 — 10 in Fort Collins, CO. And the Nature Valley Pro Ride is selecting the men’s and women’s Nature Valley Cycling Teams at regional events around the county.”
“Colavita Sutter Home definitely has been planning to do the Nature Valley Grand Prix, invitation notwithstanding!”, said Iona Wynter Parks, the women’s team’s director. “I think it is a good idea to invite, it is an event that seems to have no trouble getting entrants/ numbers.”
Applications are now open and can be found on the event web site under NVGP > Racer Technical Info. The application deadline is May 1 and invitations will be issued by May 8. The Nature Valley Grand Prix will be held June 10 — 14.
More info at: www.NatureValleyGrandPrix.com
About the Minnesota Bicycle Festival & Nature Valley Grand Prix
The Minnesota Bicycle Festival, now in its 11th year, is one of the nation’s top celebrations of biking culture with tens of thousands of cycling enthusiasts, pro athletes and avid recreational riders converging on Minnesota each year for five days in June. The Festival’s professional racing events, the Nature Valley Grand Prix, began as a one-day criterium in Saint Paul that moved to Minneapolis in 2003. The 2009 schedule includes stops in Saint Paul, Cannon Falls, Minneapolis, Mankato, and Stillwater June 10 — 14. The Minnesota Bicycle Festival is a volunteer-run event, with all proceeds donated to Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, the festival’s benefiting charity.