USA Cycling anticipates it will have to postpone most national championship events this summer, including mountain bike nationals scheduled for July 6-12 in Winter Park.
An announcement on the mountain bike national championships, which are now labeled as likely to be postponed, will be made by April 30, USA Cycling said in a detailed news release Thursday. Not only is it the top pro event in the country, it also features races for athletes of all age groups and is the pinnacle event of the season for many from Durango.
“With the current COVID-19 crisis affecting our nation and all aspects of life, USA Cycling has been constantly assessing the safety and feasibility of events, including our national championships,” USA Cycling said in the news release. “We understand the national championships are the highlight of many of our members’ year, and those who race at nationals carefully plan their training in addition to their travel and personal schedules.
“As we work with the medical community and local organizing committees to manage the impacts of this crisis, we are evaluating how to best proceed with our national championships in these challenging times.”
The pro road national championships scheduled for June 18-21 will be postponed and could see a potential change of venue from Knoxville, Tennessee. The amateur road national championships scheduled for June 25-28 in Clay County, Florida, also have been postponed.
Already postponed are the masters and para-cycling track national championships that were planned for June 30 through July 5 in Breinigsville, Pennsylvania.
All other events through July 30 are likely to be postponed, including elite and junior track nationals.
The International Cycling Union (UCI) cross-country mountain bike world championships scheduled for June 26-28 in Germany were already postponed. Durango junior men’s mountain biker Riley Amos said national championships and worlds will have a chance to move dates further back into the fall if needed. Dates had been moved up to accommodate the 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo, which have now been postponed until 2021. However, Amos does not foresee a world championship event in 2020 unless some UCI points or World Cup races can be held in advance. USA Cycling also uses the national championship event to select its teams for worlds.
Already rescheduled is the marathon mountain bike national championships set for Nov. 14 in Palo Duro, Texas. Marathon nationals were originally rescheduled for Sept. 12, the same weekend as the hugely popular Dirty Kanza gravel race in Kansas. Now, endurance cyclists won’t have to pick between the two events.
So far, the plan is to race the USA Cycling Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championships on Oct. 15-18 at Purgatory Resort in Durango with Fort Lewis College cycling set to host.
USA Cycling had already extended a suspension of all issued race permits through the end of May for any of its sanctioned events.
“As with many other parts of society, we are working in a fluid and changing environment and ask for your patience as we continue to evolve our decisions,” USA Cycling said. “We will not open any registration until we are confident we can successfully and safely hold an event. We will continue to provide as much information as possible in these uncertain times, while ensuring you and every member of our community remains safe and healthy.”