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Tour of Utah brings world-class cycling to Beehive State

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Posted at 5:50 PM, Aug 09, 2014
and last updated 2014-08-09 23:42:56-04

SALT LAKE CITY -- The Tour of Utah will reach its final stage Sunday in Park City. Stage six of the race Saturday was a draining, 107.2-mile route through the Salt Lake area’s many canyons and national forests.

Saturday’s route began at Rice Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, where spectators came to get close to the action and athletes.

Spectator Randy Miller said it’s a fun event to attend: “It’s just an amazing pro event and its free, how cool is that? We get access to the riders and team cars and take pictures, and it’s pretty exciting to watch the start and the finishes are awesome.”

When the Tour of Utah first started 10 years ago, it was a three-day amateur race at Thanksgiving Point. Today, it’s one of the biggest stage races in North America.

“Every year we see more and more people at Tanners Flats or on top of Guardsman’s Pass,” said Jenn Adrs, Tour of Utah project manager. “Out on the road sitting on their front grass, ringing their cow bell and just really enjoying it and taking it all in.”

Mark Resetarits sits in his front yard in Emigration Canyon to watch and cheer as the cyclists pass.

“The thrill of the athleticism, we’ve got world class athletes coming here for this event,” he said. “The Tour of Utah is the hardest stage race in North America, and they’re all here and in this case in my front yard so I wanted to watch it.”

The race also brings a positive impact to Utah’s economy. Last year, it was estimated that the race brought more than $17 million to the Beehive State by drawing athletes and spectators from all over the world.

“Sixteen teams competing here in the Tour of Utah this year,” Andrs said. “Six pro teams that have come over from the Tour de France. So we have 32 countries represented in the peloton today.”

The race started August 4 in Cedar City, and over the course of seven days the cyclists climb 750 miles and gain more than 50,000 feet of elevation before ending Sunday afternoon on Park City's Main Street.

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