World’s top cyclists in 206km race
by John Symon
Many of the world’s top cyclists will be competing in Montreal on Sunday, September 15 in a 205.7km race that is the fourth annual edition of the Grands Prix Cyclistes Quebec Montreal. Riders will follow a 12.1km circuit beginning on Park Ave. that takes them up and over Mount Royal 17 times. Some 168 cyclists–including a dozen Canadians–will begin pedaling when start gun fires at 11 a.m. The 2012 winner, Norwegian Lars Petter Nordhaug (Team Sky), took 5 hours and 28 minutes to complete the circuit, averaging 37.59kmh. There will be several street closings around Mount Royal Park on Sunday.
Chris Froome (U.K.) Sky Procycling, winner of the 2013 Tour de France, will be top name in the peloton. Other Tour de France winners from previous years include Australian Cadel Evans (2011), Spaniard Alberto Contador (2007 & 2009), and Andy Schleck (2010) of Luxemburg. Canada’s Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin Sharp), winner of the 2012 Giro d’Italia, will also be there. Other Canadians include: David Veilleux (Team Europcar) the first Quebecer ever to finish the Tour de France, François Parisien (Argos-‐Shimano), a stage winner in the 2013 Tour of Catalonia, Hugo Houle (AG2R La Mondiale), and Dominique Rollin (Fdj.fr).
The Montreal event and a similar one held in Quebec City on September 13 are the only two UCI WorldTour races (top level cycling events) in North America this year and are expected to draw hundreds of thousands of spectators. It is free to watch these world class cycling events; the best place to watch is probably the uphill on Camillien Houde Rd leading up to the 211m high pass.
Street closings on Sunday include parts of: Park Ave.; Camillien Houde Rd; Remembrance Rd; Cote des Neiges Rd; Gatineau St.; Decelles St.; Polytechnique Rd; Edouard Montpetit St.; Vincent d’Indy St.; and Cote Ste Catherine Rd. Closures will be staggered (depending on the street) to begin from midnight Saturday to 7 a.m. Sunday and will end at either 5 or 5:30 p.m. on Sunday. More info at: http://gpcqm.ca/uploads/Coin%20des%20ProTeams/Fermeture%20de%20rues%20Ville%20de%20Montr%C3%A9al%20ANG.pdf
Peripheral events will see two mass rides of 90 km (Circuit du paysan) and 155 km (Covey Hill) leaving Saturday, Sept. 14 from magnificent André J. Côté Park in Candiac on the South Shore. A few thousand amateur participants are expected, but registration is now complete with these two rides.