Like a phoenix from the ashes, and other clichés of redemption and rebirth, the Philadelphia Classic has defied cancellation to come back stronger - and we can watch the all-new <a href="http://www.phillycyclingclassic.org/" target="new">Parx Casino Philly Cycling Classic</a> live!
Sunday 2nd June 2013
Women: 8:30am USA Eastern/1:30pm UK/14:30 CEST/10:30pm, Sydney, Aus
Men: 12 noon USA Eastern/5pm UK/18:00 CEST/2am Monday, Sydney, Aus
Watch it live on Swagger - and follow the action on twitter with @PhillyCycling
(As with all promises of women's races being shown live, don't get your hopes up too much! It might be live coverage, or it might just be fixed cameras etc - we'll have to wait and see!)
The previous incarnation, the Liberty Classic, dated back to 1994 for the women, and 1985 for the men - and this year it's the only UCI-ranked USA race on the women's calendar. It's always been a lap race, with the circuit including the thigh-biting Manayunk Wall, a climb that's a quarter of a mile long, average 10% and gets up to 17% - but while in the past it's been dominated by sprinters, this year the course has changed, so it finishes on the climb - that'll be very tough indeed. But with prizes of $30,000 each for the women's and men's winners, and an extra $5k for the king and queen of the mountain, there's a lot to race for!
The women race 5 of the 12 mile lap, and the men 10 - and this time they won't be on the course at the same time, which is a shame - in 2009, the women's peloton caught and overtook the men, with Ina-Yoko Teutenberg famously telling the men they were a bunch of pussies and should ride faster, as she lead the bunch past them!
Because the course has changed so much, previous years' palmarés don't apply - but the women's race has never yet been won by a rider from the USA. Last year's winner Teutenberg won it five times in total, and Petra Rossner had seven victories - while among the men, Alexander Serebryakov of Team Type 1 won 2012, joining riders like André Greipel, Matthew Goss and Matti Breschel. This year? The women's team list is predominantly USA-based teams (there's no startlist, but I'd watch out for riders like Evelyn Stevens, Mara Abbott, Alison Powers, Janel Holcomb and new USA Champion Jade Wilcoxson - and non-USAians Claudia Häusler, Lex Albrecht - but bear in mind I'm not that good at USA cyclists - tell me in the comments who I should be looking for!)
There's lots of information on the great race website - and for a proper preview of the women's race, read John Cyclopunk's on Les Déesses de la Route.
Join us in the comments to follow the race live - and if you know any more information, or have any questions, please do let us all know!