This week is big for cycling in the US and especially as the USA Pro Cycling Challenge kicks off today at 1:15 PM MDT with the prologue. The course is 5.18 miles and overall is slightly downhill so it should be very fast. There is a slight climb in the Garden of the Gods before the screaming descent down Ridge Road.
Since this is a time trial, most of the riders start 1 minute a part but the last few will be 2 minutes apart. If a rider does manager to catch the rider in front of him, he’s not allowed to draft and must move to the other side of the road and make a fairly quick pass. The start order of the racers is here.
At the bottom of Ridge Road is a 90 degree left hand turn followed by the road continue to curve to the left. Take the turn too slow and riders will lose valuable time. Take it too fast and they’ll lose skin.
Here are a few more photos of Ridge Road and the turn at the bottom.
Below is a video of the entire prologue course at fast forward speed.