February 10, 2006 – News broke yesterday from Steve Bohn, Director of the Tuscon Bicycle Classic, that the 2006 TBC, scheduled for April 21-23 has been cancelled due to the difficulties arising from complications on the Stage 2 Gates Pass /Garrett Lemire Memorial Road Race, slated to run on Saturday morning, April 22.
The TBC was an event that took place in fall 2005 and was moved to a spring date at the request of riders. The problem in logistics was due to the full closure of Gates Pass and Kinney Roads, which caused numerous problems and complaints from residents, land owners and the Desert Museum and Old Tucson after the TBC in fall 2005. After meetings and discussions with Pima County Dept. of Transportation, Parks and Rec. and park executives, it was nearly impossible to come up with the newly required agreement in writing from the various business owners affected by the road closures. These agreements were required before the traffic permitting process could even move forward. Adding to the problem was the continued increase in traffic along the Stage 2 route – new housing and business developments are breaking ground monthly.
Despite having looked at numerous options to change the Stage 2 route, Bohn decided to air on the side of caution. “Safety is our number one priority,” he explained. “I need to be convinced that we have done everything in our power to make the new course as safe as possible and provide a parking area and access for 500-600 cars, work out route logistics, traffic control and acquire local and regional permits prior to next TBC. Unfortunately there was simply not enough time to accomplish that for the upcoming April 2006 date.”
Bohn is hopeful for the 2007 date, noting that, “New Stage 2 possibilities are very promising and we will keep you updated on the website as we move forward in the planning process. The course will be very challenging and traffic will minimal on 3/4 of the 20 +/- mile loop. The Stage 1 McCain Loop TT and Stage 3 Anklam/Speedway Circuit Race courses will probably not change for 2007. We hope to have a 2007 spring date established by the summer of 2006 for the 21st edition of the TBC and get the word out that the TBC is happening. The Classic will continue to be a uniquely formatted, challenging stage race because that is what has made it one of the most popular stage races in the country.”
With class, Bohn extended special thanks to all who raced in the fall version of the Tuscon Bicycle Classic. “Those who raced provided some amazing racing but it was very clear that the majority of the racers wanted a spring TBC so we will move back to that date. Thanks again for your support and understanding.”
The cycling community looks forward to a 2007 Spring Tuscon Bicycle Classic and wishes Steve Bohn and company the best of luck!