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The Tour of Utah is no more.
The climb-heavy stage race was a mainstay of elite racing for many years, with past winners including Sepp Kuss, Rob Britton, Lachlan Morton, Joe Dombrowski, Levi Leipheimer, Francisco Mancebo, Jeff Louder, Scott Moninger, and Andy Bajadali.
Medalist Sports president Chris Aronhalt announced today that the race — already postponed the last two years for COVID — would no longer continue because of inadequate sponsorship.
Larry H. Miller had been the title sponsor recently.
“On-going sponsor and host community discussions have been positive; however, not strong enough to support a viable effort to meet our collective expectations,” Aronhalt said in a social post. “While disappointed, Medalist Sports is grateful for the opportunity and cherishes the Tour of Utah’s legacy.”
The United States has seen a number of major state-centric stage races come and go in the last few decades. The Tour de Georgia brought in European pro teams, as did the Tour of Missouri. And of course the Amgen Tour of California made the biggest splash. The Tour of California announced in 2020 that it was “on pause”; Georgia folded after 2008 and Missouri’s last event was in 2009.
Some longstanding stage races remain, however. Redlands Bicycle Classic in California dates back to 1985. The Joe Martin Stage Race was first held in 1978 as the Fayetteville Spring Classic. And the Tour of the Gila in New Mexico hails back to 1987. All three have announced dates for 2022.
The Tour of Utah was first held in 2000. It became a UCI race in 2011, bringing in multiple WorldTour teams to compete alongside American squads. For 2020, the race had been slated to step up to UCI ProSeries status — one step below WorldTour — before being canceled for COVID.
USA Cycling has yet to post its Pro Road Tour calendar. For 2021, the PRT consisted of 15 events — many of which ended up being postponed or canceled.