|SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH (September 25, 2014) – One month following a record-setting 10th edition of the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) has confirmed that the Utah race has been elevated to its highest classification on the UCI America Tour, a 2.HC stage race. The Tour of Utah joins the Amgen Tour of California (May 10-17) and USA Pro Challenge (August 17-23) as the only events on the UCI America Tour with 2.HC designations. The 2015 Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah will be held Aug. 3-9.The UCI grades each individual stage race for road cycling on a four-category scale. A 2.2 is the lowest rating for a multi-day stage race. A 2.HC designation, from the French “hors categorie” meaning beyond category, is the highest rating a stage race can receive outside of the WorldTour races, such as the Tour de France. A higher categorization means that the event offers greater prize money and more UCI points for competitors, allowing organizers to invite and attract the best teams in the world. As a 2.HC event in 2015, the Tour of Utah will be allowed to invite more ProTeams to compete. Up to 65 percent of the field may now be comprised of teams in the top world rankings.“This upgraded designation by the international governing body of cycling is further evidence of the Tour of Utah’s growing stature,” said Steve Miller, president of Miller Sports Properties, which organizes the Tour of Utah. “We aspire to continue to organize a world-class race that showcases our state and the sport.”The Tour of Utah began in 2004 as a three-day, regional competition for amateur and elite cycling athletes. By 2011 the Tour had expanded to six days of racing for professional teams and offered more than $125,000 for a prize purse, tripling the amount from previous years. The UCI recognized the Tour of Utah in 2011 as a 2.1-rated stage race, adding it to the UCI America Tour for the first time. For 2015, the Tour of Utah will be part of the UCI America Tour, which includes 25 professional cycling events in North America and South America.
“The elevation of the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah to HC-status on the international calendar is a tremendous honor and a clear acknowledgement by cycling’s International governing body that the event is one of the world’s great races,” said USA Cycling CEO & President Steve Johnson. “I would like to congratulate Steve Miller and the extraordinary staff and volunteers of the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah on the success of their efforts over the past 10 years; and also thank the Utah cycling and business community for their tremendous support of the event.”
In 2014, the Tour of Utah set records with 275,000 spectators and $20 million in economic impact for the state. The seven-day event, known “America’s Toughest Stage RaceTM”, featured 753 miles of racing and 57,863 vertical feet of climbing for 16 of the best professional teams in the U.S. and abroad. American Tom Danielson of Team Garmin-Sharp claimed the overall title for the weeklong Larry H.Miller Tour of Utah for a second year in a row. The inaugural Tour of Utah Women’s Edition presented by PlayHard GiveBack was held on Aug. 6, a 15-lap circuit race at Miller Motorsports Park, and was won by American Coryn Rivera of UnitedHealthcare.
Next year’s Tour of Utah will continue as the first internationally-sanctioned cycling competition in North America following the Tour de France. Host venues and the overall route for 2015 will be announced in the coming weeks. The Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah continues to be free to all spectators, making professional cycling one of the most unique professional sports in the world today. More information about the Tour of Utah and its partners can be found by visiting www.tourofutah.com, as well as social channels Facebook (tourofutah), Twitter (thetourofutah), Instagram (thetourofutah) and YouTube (2014 Tour of Utah).