BOULDER, Colo. (VN) — The maillot jaune of the Tour de France will feature on the roads of Colorado next month when Cadel Evans starts the USA Pro Cycling Challenge. Race officials have confirmed that Evans (BMC Racing) will take part in the inaugural event, which begins August 22 in Colorado Springs.
“I think it’s a great moment of truth for us and for American cycling,” race co-chair Shawn Hunter told VeloNews. “We won’t know for a few more days, but we may have the full podium of the Tour de France, which would be a first.”
Hunter and race director Jim Birrell were among the dozens of people to greet Evans and his BMC teammates and staff at the team bus following the Aussie’s ride in the Tour’s final time trial. It was that ride in Grenoble that secured Evans’ first yellow jersey of the race and the final overall title.
Hunter joined Medalist Sports’ Birrell and Mike Plant for a three-day visit to the Tour over the final weekend, beginning with Friday’s stage to L’Alpe d’Huez. Hunter said that the trip was not to shop for athletes to fill the race’s startlist, but to build relationships. He did said Sunday in Paris that “big things” were coming and the Evans news is the first among them.
Evans will be the first reigning Tour champion to race in the United States since Alberto Contador at the 2007 Tour of Missouri.
Hunter also confirmed Thursday that an international distribution deal is in the works that should see the race broadcast in more than 100 country and territories.