June 2, 2005 (Stamford, CT) – OLNÂ®, the home of professional cycling, today announced it will air the Wachovia USPRO Championship, the longest-running single-day cycling race in the U.S., on Sunday, June 12 at 5 p.m. ET. Nearing the start of the 2005 Tour de France on July 2, OLN’s coverage of the USPRO race will allow viewers to get a sneak preview of 2005 Paris-Nice Champion and 2004 Olympic Medalist Bobby Julich. Julich is a dark-horse contender for this year’s grand Tour and one of 200 cyclists gunning to take the yellow jersey from defending champion Lance Armstrong, who is set to retire after this year’s quest for a record-shattering seventh consecutive title.
A third-place finisher in the 1998 Tour de France, Julich is believed to be the one to take the reigns as America’s premier cyclist after Armstrong’s retirement. Other riders to watch in the USPRO include three-time and reigning U.S. National Professional Champion Freddie Rodriguez; 2004 Wachovia USPRO Champion Francisco Ventoso; 2003 Tour de Georgia Champion Chris Horner; current world U-23 Road Race Champion Guiliano Figueras; and up-and-coming star Tyler Farrar.
In its 21st year, the USPRO race takes the best professional cyclists on a 14.4-mile circuit through the streets of Philadelphia, beginning and ending at the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, for a total of 156 miles in a quest to be crowned the 2005 US Professional Road Champion. The race, which is contested on June 5 at 9 a.m., is one of six official events on the 2005 Pro Cycling Tour.
OLN is the leader in outdoor adventure and action sports television. Now in more than 63 million homes, OLN is the home of best-in-class events like The Tour de France, The Gravity Games, Professional Bull Riders (PBR), the Boston Marathon and USSA Skiing. The Network offers exclusive programming in four primary areas: Outdoor Adventure, Action Sports, Field Sports and Bulls & Rodeo. OLN is distributed via cable systems and satellite operators throughout the continental United States and Hawaii.