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Revamped Philadelphia Bicycle Race Will Be Shorter, More Compact Event

(US Rep. Bob Brady, who brokered a plan to salvage the Philadelphia bike race, is joined by some of the principles in the deal.  Credit: Steve Tawa)

(US Rep. Bob Brady, who brokered a plan to salvage the Philadelphia bike race, is joined by some of the principles in the deal. Credit: Steve Tawa)

Steve Tawa Steve Tawa
Steve Tawa joined KYW Newsradio in 1990, and splits his time between...
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By Steve Tawa

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Manayunk-based nonprofit group that has jumped into the saddle to keep the big pro bicycling race rolling in Philadelphia is putting the event in focus with more details announced today: on sponsorship, and a tighter race course.

The new race, called the Philly Cycling Classic, won’t be the epic, 156-mile event that featured a start and finish line along the stately Benjamin Franklin Parkway with the Manayunk Wall the turnaround point.

The new race course will probably be 115 to 120 miles long, featuring Main Street in Manayunk as the start-finish line.  That’s just a stone’s throw from the Wall, which would continue as a main feature of the race.

The new course, however, would veer into the Roxborough and East Falls neighborhoods.

The course will therefore be more compact, and the budget will be about a one-third of what the previous event cost to put on.

Lead organizer Richard Adler (second from left in photo, wearing grey jacket) says the new configuration should be more fun for spectators, who will see the riders more frequently.

“Our goal is to cut that down from every 30 minutes to every 10 to 15 minutes, and make it a way more spectator-friendly, faster, challenging bike course,” he said today.

Parx Casino is the title sponsor, with New Penn Financial, the Philadelphia Credit Union, and Sunoco chipping in as additional sponsors so far.

Organizers meet with city officials on Friday to finalize the logistics for the June 2nd event.

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