5.23.2011

"A New Course for Barre": 1st Barre Grand Prix

So, there was a bicycle race in Barre yesterday - a first year event.


The local newspaper (which hides its entire website behind a paywall in an attempt to survive) proclaimed rather hyperbolically that the event drew "scores" to downtown.

As I was onsite from 5 am to 5 pm and walked many loops of the course during the day, I guess it would depend on the what the precise definition of 'scores' is... Thousands?  No.  Many hundreds?  I don't think so.  Were there some people out spectating and participating in various fitness-related related activities?  Yes.

Sunday morning, 5 am.  Setting up the course in the early morning stillness. 
All quiet on Granite Street, with the Old Labor Hall.  Cone & barrier placement by yours truly.
Later in the day, races staged on Main Street under sunny skies (very rare in VT this spring).
P1-2 Men cornered hard on the fast, swoopy course.  
It was kind of ironic to work on putting on bike race on May 22, 2011 because when I got home, tired, dirty and baked by 12 hours in the sun mixed with lots of interaction with the public, Tyler Hamilton was on Sixty Minutes, giving his insight into what really fueled Lance Armstrong's seven year reign in the Tour de France.

Doping scandals and real tragedies aside (here and here), it was fun to work a new race and meet some new people.   Barre is rough and downtrodden -- one of the reasons making the race easier to put on, was the number of vacant storefronts downtown... but many people put in many hours into planning the race -- trying to make something positive happen in the city.  I think that the team behind the event succeeded in putting in a foundation to build on in future years:  We don't want it to be 'one and done'.

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