around the country will remember the evening in August that produced some of
the most severe weather of the year; that was also the evening of the Mass Avenue Criterium
Avenue Criterium. The final race was cut short because of the weather, but not
before Eric Young (Bissell) rode to victory, followed closely by Kirk Albers
(Panther), Chad Burdzilauskas (Texas Roadhouse), Jon Jacob (NUVO) and Weston
Luzadder (Jamis/Sutter-Home). The Criterium keeps gaining riders, events, and
fans — and this year it ended safely, with high drama and excellent
impressive cycling track. Marian has a history of top-notch cycling and this
year was no exception. In September, over 35 colleges and universities were
represented in the USA Collegiate Track Nationals. Marian won Division I, with
Big changes continue
changes continuefor the Mayor Taylor Velodrome. Officials plan to bid for a
national-level race in 2014, and Marian University has acquired the surrounding
Lake Sullivan Sports Complex. Marian will continue to make improvements to the
track and park, including the reconstruction of the BMX park and a permanent
1.5-mile cyclocross course is in the works. Cyclocross is the off-road version
of bike racing. In fact, sometimes in Cyclocross it's impossible to even be on
a bike, and cyclists are forced to carry their bikes up stairs and steep hills.
It's riding the roughest terrain. But it's excellent conditioning for cyclists
in the off-season.
these exciting developments in 2011 led to USA Cycling naming Marian University
the 2011 "Collegiate Club of the Year." Additional factors (beyond the above)
Adam Leibovitz, reaching an
average GPA of 3.04 in 2011.
started circulating around the cycling community in Indianapolis, and in November,
they were confirmed: The NUVO Cultural Trail Cycling team merged with the Bissel Masters/Elite Cycling team
Bissel Masters/Elite Cycling team, to form one single USA Cycling NRC Amateur
team for 2012 and beyond. This means more attention to elite cycling in
Indianapolis, and it also means more money raised for an outstanding
organization. The team is dedicated to donating a portion of its prize money to
World Bicycle Relief, which provides bicycles to use for transportation to people
in Africa, and around the world. Transportation allows for education,
healthcare, and so many other needs that some people are fortunate enough to
take for granted.
casual bikes on the move
everyone is competing on two wheels; Indianapolis has added quite a few
exciting opportunities for casual and recreation riders, too. Extensive work
has been done this year to reach 64 miles of cycling lanes in the city; by
2015, Rebuildindy funds will enable the city to add 75 more miles of trails and
bike lanes. Although the additional lanes have confused some drivers, overall,
the city is beginning to slow down and realize that cyclists own the streets
just as much as cars do.
a lot of stalling and even more headaches, the Cultural Trail through Fountain
Square is nearly completed; it's just begging Indianapolis patrons to bundle up
and visit their favorite shops and restaurants over the holidays.
Indy Parks board recently voted to allow cyclists and pedestrians to expand the
hours of usage for the Monon Trail. Now the trail is open and patrolled from 5 a.m.
to 9 p.m. Already, those who have been monitoring the trail have found that
quite a few people use the trail during the early morning hours and to commute
to and from work. The bike advocacy group INDYCOG presented the board with
1,100 petitions in order to extend the hours; they're still working with the
city in an effort to have the trail opened and patrolled 24 hours, and
eventually for lighting on the trail.
to their website, INDYCOG started as a
blog in early 2009; in 2010, they expanded to working as a bicycle education
and advocacy group. They now have well over 100 members and have sponsored a
number of events, from the Mass Ave. Criterium to the 2 Wheels 1 City
celebration, which raised nearly $1,000 for Free Wheelin' Community Bikes. In
November, they also received recognition as a non-profit organization.
the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department is hitting the streets on two
wheels: The Central Indiana Bicycling Association Foundation and the Bicycle Garage Indy
Garage Indydonated five new mountain bikes in conjunction with the opening of
the Indy Bike Hub YMCA. Not only does this promote a healthy environment, bikes
actually enable police officers to better patrol certain areas.
hubs, bike ports
grand opening of the Indy Bike Hub came right at the middle of September,
complete with a ribbon cutting by Mayor Greg Ballard and all kinds of incentives
to join. The Hub has already added several new exercise classes and courses to
promote safety. The Bike Hub hopes to provide a place for people to stay fit
to Karin Ogden, executive director of the downtown YMCA (Athenaeum and Bike
Hub), the City Market "continues to evolve into a thriving local community."
Ogden said that people can look forward to more organized rides from the Hub
from week to week, and that the City Market, Bicycle Garage Indy, Bicycle
Indiana, and IndyCog have, "lots of great synergy."
thing that Ogden said people might not realize is that the Bike Hub is much
like the other YMCA facilities. "I tell people to imagine their favorite
neighborhood Y, with a bike twist." In addition to the bike shop and storage,
the Hub offers all kinds of cardiovascular and strength equipment, and several
fitness classes — perfect for the winter months.
the Bike Hub YMCA, The National Institute of Fitness and Sport (NIFS), in
partnership with the White River State Park, offers cyclist access to its
BikePort. People can park their bikes with access to the IndyGo Red Line to
Downtown Indy. NIFS also offers bicycle commuter memberships.