FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 1, 2019
Contact: Susan Norton
2022 Cyclo-Cross World Championships to be Held in Fayetteville, Second U.S. City of Host in Event’s History
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark.— The City of Fayetteville is excited to announce that Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) selected Fayetteville to host the 2022 Cyclo-Cross World Championships. The announcement came today in Bogense, Denmark, site of the 2019 Cyclo-Cross World Championships, after ratification by the UCI Management Committee. This is the second time the race will be hosted in the United States; the first time was in Louisville, KY during 2013.
“The City is thrilled to welcome the UCI Cyclo-Cross World Championships to Fayetteville in 2022,” said Fayetteville Mayor Lioneld Jordan. “When we acquired the acreage for Centennial Park at Millsaps Mountain, our vision was to develop a new trail system to serve national and regional cyclists as well as to preserve lands for hikers and trail runners,” Jordan said. “This event is proof certain that we can continue to dream big for our future. We are always happy to roll out Fayetteville’s hospitality red carpet and share the unique attributes of our beautiful city with visitors from across the world!”
The site for the event has yet to be developed; plans for the park include state-of-the-art cyclo-cross and mountain biking facilities that will connect to Fayetteville’s existing 45 miles of shared used paved trails and 38 miles of natural surface trails. The City of Fayetteville purchased the 228-acre property on Millsaps Mountain, northwest of Highway 16 and I-49 from Centennial Bank in 2018 with a 50-percent matching grant from the Walton Family Foundation. The park parcel is located within three miles of 620-arcre Kessler Mountain Regional Park, home to more than 13 miles of hiking and biking trails and numerous athletic fields with additional phases to come.
BikeNWA, a Northwest Arkansas-based nonprofit that fosters a thriving cycling culture in the Northwest Arkansas region, will lead a coalition of community partners in organizing the World Championships. Thanks to a grant provided to BikeNWA by the Walton Family under the support and guidance of Steuart Walton and Tom Walton, this event will be the culmination of a four-year plan to bring world-class cyclo-cross racing to the region.
That plan includes continuing the support and growth of the local cyclo-cross scene through infrastructure development and education, as well as bringing multiple national-level cyclo-cross events to Northwest Arkansas leading up to the World Championships event January 29 - 30, 2022.
Cyclo-cross is a fall and winter cycling discipline that has grown dramatically in the last decade, especially in the United States. Competitors race on a spectator-friendly course approximately 1.75 miles (3 km), in length that includes short steep hills and obstacles that may require dismounting and running with the bike. Races take place “rain or shine, making cyclo-cross riders some of the toughest competitors across disciplines.
The World Championship weekend will be part of a multi-day festival for both new fans and die-hard cyclo-cross aficionados. The race will be the pinnacle of a weekend filled with activities and events that showcase all that Northwest Arkansas has to offer.
Champions will be crowned in six categories during the two days of racing: Elite Men, Elite Women, Under-23 Men, Under-23 Women, Junior Men, and Junior Women. Competitors from approximately 30 nations will be racing while spectators are expected to travel from across the globe.
Check out the 22-second UCI announcement video here. For more information, visit www.fayetteville2022.com. Follow along on Instagram @Fayetteville2022, Twitter @Fayetteville22, and www.facebook.com/fayetteville2022