Arizona Road Cyclist News
ack Quinn, Editor

 © June 10, 2009

Welcome to Arizona Road Cyclist News, which is sent out by E-mail every other Wednesday and is posted to the "Back Issues" page of several days later. This newsletter attempts to address issues of interest to people who cycle the roads and streets of Arizona, be they commuters, club riders, recreational riders, tourists, or racers. Arizona Road Cyclist News is free of charge. Feel free to forward it to your friends. If someone has E-mailed this newsletter to you, you may sign up for your own free subscription at

This newsletter is copyrighted. You may send individual articles to others if you identify Arizona Road Cyclist News as the source. However, it's much easier to forward the entire newsletter, in which case the copyright information is already included.

We are in the summer doldrums, as far as cycling events are concerned. Races are mostly unexciting time trials, and there are also fewer tours during the heat of summer. As a result, this newsletter is mercifully short. :)

In this issue:

     Upcoming Arizona Races
     GABA's Escape to the High Country
     Phoenix Metro Bicycle Club's July White Mountain Tour
     Back in Cycling's Olden Days
     Feedback -- A West Valley Ride

Upcoming Arizona Races

The Arizona Track Series takes place on the weekend of June 13 and 14 at the velodrome in Balboa Park in San Diego. (When are we going to finally get a velodrome in Phoenix and what happened to the money that was raised decades ago to build one?) For more information on the track series, click here.

Saturday, June 20 brings the second in the 3 Bears time trial series, which takes place on Park Link Drive, which connects I-10 to to US79 near Red Rock, which is in turn near Picacho Peak. The course length is 20 kilometers, and the registration fee is $20. For more information, click here.

Finally, the end of June brings us the 12.5-mile Mount Lemon Time Trial, which goes straight up Tucson's Mount Lemon to Bear Canyon, a vertical gain of roughly 3000 feet. Registration is on-site from 5:30 to 6:30 a.m. with the first rider off at 7 a.m. Registration is $15 for adults and $2 for juniors. For more information, click here.

GABA's Escape to the High Country

On the weekend of June 13 and 14, GABA Tucson is sponsoring what it calls the 2nd Annual Escape to the High Country. The ride starts on Saturday at the Happy Jack Lodge near Clint's Well and offers 100, 60, and 45-mile ride options. The Saturday ride progresses past the Happy Jack Ranger Station and Lake Mary into Flagstaff, where riders will spend the night camping out or optionally at a motel. Sunday's ride retraces the same route. A shuttle takes riders on the 45-mile ride over a segment of the course. The cost of the ride is $85 for those of us who are not members of GABA. GABA members with a user name and password can log onto a special section of the Website and receive an unspecified discount. To judge from the Website, members of other bicycle clubs pay the full fee. For more information and to register, click here

Phoenix Metro Bicycle Club's July White Mountain Tour

The Phoenix Metro Bicycle Club's 2009 White Mountain Tour promises a break from the summer heat the weekend of July 11 and 12. The ride fee is $70 for the general public and $60 for members of the Phoenix Metro Bike Club, the Arizona Bicycle Club and GABA. There is a $20 late fee for registrations postmarked after July 1.Registration includes a meal Saturday evening. There is also a $5 fee for those who chose to camp out Saturday night.

The ride starts Saturday, July 11 at the Hon Dah Resort and Casino at the intersection of Arizona highways 73 and 260 south of Pinetop. Check-in is from 7:00 to 8:30 a.m. From there, riders have a choice of a 73-mile or a 100-mile route to Springerville-Eagar. Sunday's ride is 38 miles including the climb from Springerville to the area of the Sunrise Ski Resort. From there it's mostly downhill back to the starting point. To see the ride's brochure in PDF format, click here.

Back in Cycling's Olden Days

My remark in last edition of Arizona Road Cyclist News  about Eric Heiden's crashing in a Valley criterium in the days when Arizona used to promote big races with national-class riders set Austin King to wondering what racing was like in the old days here in Arizona, the old days being, of course, the 1960s and 1970s. As a result, Austin is looking for the oldest consecutively licensed bike racer in Arizona. If you have a suggestion, you can leave a comment on Austin's blog by clicking here.

Austin's curiosity also led to his doing an E-mail interview with Richard Fisher, who was racing in the 1970s and who is still riding today. To read the interview about the old days on Austin's blog, click here.

Question: The BOS is the top ride in the Eastside for racers. Who started the BOS ride and when? The answer in the next issue of Arizona Road Cyclist News.

Feedback -- A West Valley Ride

I received the following E-mail about a ride that may interest some of our West Valley readers.
Greetings, Jack

I wanted to let you know about our Westside group ride and ask for a plug in your next newsletter. We have grown a lot this year. You have already heard of one of our riders, Gary Stuebe, the rider who was hit by a car in the 08 El Tour and went into a coma and who is now getting better we’re happy to say. Thanks for keeping up with him in your newsletter.

About the ride: Our route has open roads, two decent hills (about 1,000 feet of climbing), two water stops, is uncongested and has few traffic lights to contend with.  We have been around for over seven years and have been relatively unknown until recently.  Thanks to word of mouth, more and more riders are joining in and without exception we hear the newcomers, most coming in from the East Valley, say that it’s the best ride in the Valley.  We don’t have the prestige or the in-your-face competition that the BOS ride has, but we do offer a quick and growing A group and a very pleasant B group. We welcome all new riders and make sure they don’t get dropped from the B group.  We do have our competitive moments and five sprint points along a 50 to 60 mile route (with several out and back points to enable riders to regroup), but we all focus on having a great and safe time.  Our focus is on fitness and camaraderie so we ask anyone with an attitude to leave it at home and be prepared to support each other when they ride with us.

In recent weeks we’ve had around 45 to 50 riders with about a 50-50 split of A and B riders. The primary teams are Colovita, Swiss American, and the old Phoenix Consumers Cycling Club members.  We have a mix of men and women with tri-athletes, new riders and Cat 2-5s with an occasional pro and even former European pro riders.  In short, we have someone in our group that everyone could relate to or may have even met before.  All are welcome and we look forward to seeing new faces. We just ask you to leave the attitudes at home.

Currently our start time is every Saturday at 6 a.m. at Lifetime Fitness just north of I-10 off the Bullard exit on the northeast corner of McDowell and Bullard.  If you want to experience a new ride with very light traffic, mostly rural areas, new friendly faces, good roads and bike lanes, and a little bit of climbing (Estrella Mt Ranch and Verrado) please have them look at our website:

Paul Theisen


Arizona Road Cyclist News,
Jack Quinn, Editor