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After the owners of the US Cup detached themselves and their title sponsorship from the Pro Cross-Country Tour last week they promised a new national series.
On Friday Scott Tedro — owner of Team ShoAir and chairman of US Cup, which was managing the Pro XCT for USA Cycling — announced the 2010 dates for the inaugural Triple Crown All Mountain Series. The series will include cross-country, Super D and short track at races that include Bonelli Park and Fontana in California, the Chalk Creek Stampede in Colorado and the Massanutten Hoo-Ha in Virginia.
“The whole concept of the Triple Crown event is, in conjunction with our partner promoters, incorporate three top-tier venues and offer pro riders a substantial amount of prize money — over $35,000 in cash payouts — not just the top three pro riders, but to the top 10, while still making it logistically possible to incorporate it with their existing race schedule,” Tedro said in a release.
Following the US Cup-USA Cycling split last week, Tedro said a main reason behind his leaving the Pro XCT were the demands placed on promoters for UCI sanctioning. UCI inscription fees impose unnecessarily high costs and provide only small benefits to a limited number of riders, he said.
However, with USA Cycling’s continuation of the UCI-inscripted Pro XCT series in 2010, Tedro said he wanted to take into consideration all major UCI events and dates before US Cup released its Triple Crown schedule.
“The US Cup has also, as a show of support for the pro riders that are chasing Olympic birth, tentatively agreed to do our part by hosting a UCI 1 inscripted Pro XCT event at Fontana on March 27-28th, and feel good that we have established this series with minimal impact and overlap of existing events.” Tedro said.
To make the new series more appealing to riders, sponsors and media, Ty Kady, US Cup marketing director, said it was decided to incorporate cross-country, Super D and short track into the format.
“A rider’s best two of three events will be calculated to crown a winner at each race and ultimately the overall series champion,” Cady said.
The US Cup will be paying 10 deep in each discipline, plus offer US Cup bonus bucks to the top 10 male and female finishers at each individual event given certain field numbers are met, Cady said.
“Then, as an added bonus, any rider — male or female — that can sweep all three rounds of the Triple Crown will put an extra $2K in their pocket,” Cady said. “This could be a huge pay day for the riders.”
The opening round of the US Cup Triple Crown All Mountain Series will be held at Bonelli Park in California on March 13-14. The second round will incorporate the Mountain States Cup series at Colorado’s Chalk Creek Stampede May 15-16. The final round will be at Massanutten resort in Virginia on June 19-20.
In addition, Cady said the US Cup will continue with its network of Kenda Cup’s, that act as local and regional qualifiers. The Kenda Cups feature 15 locations across the U.S., from Ashland Oregon to French Lick Indiana. The US Cup Invitational shootout will be on Sept. 11-12. The US Cup will also manage a “high-level” West Coast-based series that incorporates the Triple Crown opener, Pro XCT race and other California favorite venues.