Tucson Bicycle Classic Promotes Equality through Equal Distances, Prize Money and Women’s New Racer Program
TUCSON, Arizona (January 24, 2022) — The Tucson Bicycle Classic is pleased to announce for the first time ever, the race will feature equal race distances for both women’s and men’s race categories, and will continue to offer equal prize purses for men and women.
“I’ve been speaking with professional and novice women who are so excited for this change and myself as director and our race committee are honored to be one of very few stage races where equality is the standard.” – Marco Colbert, Race Director
One of the women Colbert met with is Kathryn Bertine, a local legend in the Tucson cycling community. Bertine raced professionally, and spent years fighting for equality in sport.
“I’m incredibly honored to play a role in TBC’s equity initiative. During my professional career I raced the Tucson Bicycle Classic at a lesser distance than the men, but knew the women were capable of handling the same distances. To finally see TBC set a standard for equality is really special.” – Kathryn Bertine, former pro cyclist, author, and CEO of Homestretch Foundation
In addition to securing equal prize purses and distances for athletes, Tucson Bicycle Classic has created a Women’s New Racer Program to assist and mentor women to enter the sport.
Tucson’s Kathryn Bertine and Homestretch Foundation (an organization Bertine founded and serves as CEO) will support this effort. Pro athletes from Homestretch and other women’s pro cycling teams will help educate noviceathletes on race etiquette, tactics, nutrition and safety.
“The goal of Women’s New Racer Program is to help women feel welcomed into the sport. It can often be intimidating for women to enter a challenging, male-dominated sport, but we’re here to help. Women arebadasses and they belong in cycling.” – Kathryn Bertine
The Tucson Bicycle Classic is a 3-day stage race scheduled to take place March 4-6, 2022. TBC is USAC sanctioned, and offers equal cash purses for male and female athletes. Proceeds from this event will benefit El Grupo Youth Cycling, a nonprofit youth cycling organization in Tucson that empowers youth and encourages a lifelong love of riding.
“Tucson has one of the best cycling communities in the country and is a training destination for elite cyclists from all over the world. This community deserves a race that reflects the strength of local riders who are able to train hard 365 days a year in sunny, beautiful Tucson!” – Marco Colbert, Race Director