Pro XCT Begins in California with US Cup Series at Fontana and Bonelli Park
(April 4, 2018) –The Pro Mountain Bike Cross-Country Tour(Pro XCT) begins this month with two signature HC (hors categorie) events held at iconic mountain bike venues in California. The Fontana City XC will take place April 7 at Southridge Park in Fontana. The Bonelli Park XC will follow on April 14 at Bonelli Park in San Dimas.
Both events are part of the 2018 USCupXCO Series presented by Sho-Air International. The series features the world’s best racers in the Olympic format cross-country discipline.
A total of seven events in five states are part of USA Cycling’s Pro XCT calendar. All the events on this calendar are UCI-sanctioned, allowing elite riders the opportunity to earn valuable UCI ranking points. Four of the events, including Fontana City XC and Bonelli Park XC, will offer competitions in UCI Junior Series.
Fontana City XC has been upgraded from Category 3 to UCI HC for the 2018 Pro XCT season. Some new sections have been added to the classic course at Southridge Park. Athletes will be challenged with epic climbs and lots of rocks on the 5.2-mile circuit. The UCI Junior Women and Men will race at 8 a.m. PT, followed by the UCI Elite Women at 12:30 p.m. and the UCI Elite Men at 2:45 p.m.
A world-class field of national champions, Olympians and World Cup winners are expected in Fontana. US Cup Series and Fontana defending champions Kate Courtney (Kentfield, Calif./Specialized) and Chris Blevins (Durango, Colo./Specialized) will be at start lines for women and men, respectively.
Others competing among the elite women will be Canadian Catharine Pendrel (Clif Pro Team), who is a two-time cross-country world champion and 2016 Olympic Games bronze medalist; American Lea Davison (Clif Pro Team), who is a two-time Olympian and 2016 World Championship silver medalist; Caroline Bohé, the 2017 Denmark Junior Women’s XC national champion; and Haley Batten (Clif Pro Team), the 2017 U.S. U23 Women’s XC national champion. On the men’s side, expect two Danish athletes, Simon Andreassen (Specialized Racing), a U23 World Cup winner, and Sebastian Carstensen, a nine-time national champion, to challenge the top U.S. riders.
The 2018 version of the 2.6-mile Bonelli Park course has undergone some significant changes, providing some tight, twisty single track and short, steep ascents, while providing plenty of double track and fire road for passing. The new layout has the course crossing itself multiple times, providing prime viewing areas for spectators.
The California swing of the Pro XCT season will conclude April 21 at the Subaru Sea Otter Classic in Monterey. Other events will include the Soldier Hollow Pro XCT in Midway, Utah on May 5-6; the Missoula XC in Missoula, Mont. on June 9; Julbo Eastern Grind in Catamount, Vt. on July 28; Purgatory’s Revenge in Durango, Colo. on Sept. 2. For more information visit https://www.usacycling.org/find-event/national-calendars.