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Cycling Wed Feb 23 2011

Registration for Gapers Block Crits Opens Tomorrow

Big news: CDOT's approved the paperwork, so now we get to race. Thursday, Feb. 24, registration opens up for the week-long Gapers Block criterium series in Calumet Park in southeastside Chicago. The week of racing stretches from March 21 through the 25th. And just like in the past years' iterations, these races are for beginner competitive cyclists who are new to the sport and are looking to get some experience ahead of the spring and summer racing season.

Pre-registration for this low-cost race series is $50 for men and $25 for women for all five days (USAC license required to pre-reg). Day-of registration is a bit more at $20 per male and $10 per female.

Even if you can only race a few days of the series, it is considerably cheaper to pre-reg and get the low price. Many racers did just that, registering for the entire series knowing they would only be able to hit up three or four of the individual races.

The course follows the Calumet Park south loop, a 0.8 mile of flat, smooth pavement with no tricky corners and great sightlines. See the map of the course here.

Nightly race schedule after the jump ...


6 p.m: Registration & course open
6:10 p.m: Men's 4/5 (beginners) -- 30 min - field limit 50
6:50 p.m: Women's 3 (intermediate) - 30 min - field limit 50
6:51 p.m: Women's 4 (beginners) -- 30 min - field limit 50
7:30 p.m: Men's 4/5 (beginners) - 30 min - field limit 50

Getting to Calumet Park is not very hard by bike -- it's a nice 12 mile ride from the Loop -- but by car, it's better to get better directions as most online mapping resources will have drivers geton the Skyway (and spending money on tolls unnecessarily).

Try this instead:

Exit the Dan Ryan I-94 at 63rd (exit 58B), go east on 63rd, south on King, and take South Chicago Ave. Then left on 95th which leads into Calumet Park.

Expect some awesome swag for prizes (there will be a frameset or two on the line), maybe some brews, and of course, awesome racing.

 
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