Benchmark Twilight Cycling Classic has something for everyone

Submitted photoThe 14th edition of the Benchmark Twilight Cycling Classic comes to WEst Chester Aug. 11.
Submitted photoThe 14th edition of the Benchmark Twilight Cycling Classic comes to WEst Chester Aug. 11.

West Chester >> On Saturday, Aug. 11, West Chester will become a hotbed of family-focused fun and excitement with the 14th edition of the Benchmark Twilight Cycling Classic. “No other event in the area offers such a diverse array of things to see and do for the entire family. There’s something for everyone, and it’s free,” said Mark Yoder, President of the Greater West Chester Chamber of Commerce, organizer of the event.

Before top professional bike racers from all over the country, and beyond, go wheel-to-wheel in all-out contests of endurance and strategy, West Chester will be awash in activities for the whole family. In addition to professional bike racing, visitors will experience an unusual series of tag-team trike racing, kids’ bike races, an exciting amateur bike race, great food, shopping, craft beer, good times, family-friendly events and lots more from 3:00 P.M. to 10:00 P.M.

Hundreds of kids are expected to race in the West Chester Dental Arts Kids’ Race.

Children will once again start off the afternoon’s cycling fun at 3:30 P.M. with the West Chester Dental Arts Kids’ Race. This series of age-determined races provides children 3 to 10 years old the opportunity to feel the excitement of competitive cycling, many for the first time. There is no charge to register, but a helmet is required. It’s always a favorite with parents and grandparents alike who love cheering on the kids. Everyone’s a winner and receives an official race medal and T-shirt compliments of West Chester Dental Arts. Registration takes place from 2:45 P.M. to 3:15 P.M.

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The My Benifit Adviser Kids’ Zone provides hours of fun and games.

Children will have plenty to do in the My Benifit Adviser Kids’ Zone, a welcoming wonderland of fun and activities, including giant inflatables of all descriptions, treats, games and other family-focused activities.

“Every year we find ourselves enjoying more and more at this phenomenal community event. Don’t be surprised to see so many employees of Benchmark Federal Credit Union gearing up their children for the kids’ race, enjoying face painting at our booth in the Community Festival and awarding pro cyclists at the finish line. We know first-hand that there is something for everyone,” says Rebecca Worthington, Vice President of Marketing for Benchmark Federal Credit Union, the title sponsor of the Benchmark Twilight Cycling Classic.

The Community Festival offers out-of-the-ordinary ways for good living.

A carnival-like atmosphere pervades many areas of West Chester on Race Day, especially at the block-long Community Festival, a veritable World’s Fair of booths with all the latest in gadgets and what-nots of all descriptions, plus great food, giveaways and other surprises.

The Tolsdorf Trike Challenge provides laughs, chills and a big helping of fun.

Always a crowd-favorite, this series of tag-team trike races finds team after team going head-to-head in a mad dash down Gay Street on adult-sized tricycles. Demanding both skill and stamina, victory has its rewards. Not only will the winning team get special bragging rights and have their name engraved on possibly the world’s biggest Trike Trophy with all the past victors, each member will be a VIP guest at the Crit Club located along the race route. Any business, organization or group is invited to test their skills by registering on line by Friday, August 10.

Local bike racers will face off in the Rothman Institute Amateur Trials and Criterium.

Starting at 8:00 A.M. at the Bayard Rustin High School campus, USA Cycling-sanctioned bike-racing heats will take place to determine the 125-rider field for the Rothman Institute Amateur Criterium that takes place at 5:45 P.M. in downtown West Chester. Attracting growing numbers of participants, the trials are open to all Cat 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 riders, as well as Masters 35+, 45+, 55+ and 65+. There will also be racing heats for Junior Boys and Girls, 9 to 18. For families and spectators alike, there are fine picnic areas where they can watch the racing action.

Iron Hill Pro Men’s Criterium and Brumbaugh Wealth Management Pro Women’s Criterium

From this point on, all eyes turn towards the street. Everyone becomes a cycling enthusiast as the tension ratchets up for the two marquee professional events of the evening. First up, it’s the 40K Brumbaugh Wealth Management Pro Women’s Criterium at 6:45 P.M. followed at 8:00 P.M. with the 65K Iron Hill Pro Men’s Criterium, a key race on the USA CRITS Championship calendar before the finals taking place in Atlantic City this September. Racing fans will enjoy top professional male and female riders from all over the country competing in West Chester.

“Over the last 13 years the Iron Hill Pro Men’s Criterium and the Brumbaugh Wealth Management Pro Women’s Criterium have become two of the most important dates on the pro cycling calendar,” says Mr. Yoder. “Whatever your interest, whatever your age, you can count on a really exciting day of racing – and endless things to do for the whole family!”

Details of all the day’s activities can be found at www.GreaterWestChester.com.