World's best cyclists coming to Elk Grove

More than 1,000 cyclists from the United States and worldwide will descend on Elk Grove Village this weekend for the internationally acclaimed 2011 Alexian Brothers Tour of Elk Grove, running Friday, Aug. 5 to Sunday, Aug. 7.

This year's event will feature world-class cyclists, a three-stage professional men's competition and a three-stage women's race held over three days, an adaptive athlete race, a children's big wheel race, a Mayor's Challenge Charity Time-Trial, and a Village Trustees' Fun Ride.

Tour of Elk Grove draws top Midwest, national and international cyclists and teams. Races are held on village streets.

The 2011 event has been designated a Union Cycliste Internationale race. The Tour of Elk Grove is one of only six races in the United States to be sanctioned by UCI, the Switzerland-based world governing body that oversees international competitive cycling events.

Tour of Elk Grove also is on USA Cycling's prestigious Men's National Racing Calendar. The women's three-day, three-stage race is new to the calendar this year. USA Cycling is the sanctioning body for competitive cycling in the U.S.#8220;We're proud to now be holding three-day, three-stage NRC races for both men and women,#8221; Elk Grove Village Mayor Craig Johnson said.This year also marks the Heart Of A Marine Foundation's first adaptive athlete race.

Featuring 15 pro/amateur races with total prize money of more than $150,000, the Tour has the richest three-day, three-stage men's pro cycling purse in the world.

All races start and finish at the intersections of Elk Grove Boulevard and Ridge Avenue.

The Mayor's Challenge Charity Time-Trial starts at 3:30 p.m. Friday just before the professional men's and women's races. Amateur cyclists will ride along the same 4.5-mile time trial course as the pros.

Johnson, who took last year off after a bicycle accident, will participate in this year's Charity Time Trial. The mayor has offered to donate $20 to the Elk Grove Fallen Soldier Memorial Fund for the first 25 rides who beat his time.

All proceeds from the Charity Time Trial go toward the fund created after the village lost four young soldiers to the war on terror. In honor of the sacrifices of the soldiers and their families, the village established college scholarships and partnered with the Heart Of A Marine Foundation to help military families in need.

The professional men's and women's time trials start at 4:30 p.m. Friday.

The professional men's competition involves the 4.5-mile time trial, which kicks off the weekend of racing on Friday. The second stage is a 93-mile road race which takes place Saturday. The race concludes Sunday with a 6.2-mile loop course.

Admission is free for spectators.

Other weekend activities include an on-site sports/vendor expo, community races, activities for kids, and community block parties on Friday and Saturday nights with food, live music and fireworks.

The village also will conduct a trustee yard sign challenge during the weekend.

Residents who live along the Chicago Blackhawks Pro-Men's Road Race route are encouraged to design and create welcome signs to cheer on riders. On Saturday, village trustees will ride along the route and select the top six bike race signs.

Signs must be placed in a yard or driveway. For the safety of riders, the village will not allow any signs to overhang the street. Prizes for the challenge are: $400 Visa gift card for first place; $200 Visa gift card for second place; and four $100 Visa gift cards for the remaining winners.

Tour of Elk Grove is sponsored by Alexian Brothers Medical Center, a nationally acclaimed health care facility in Elk Grove Village.

For more information, visit or call (773) 868-3010.

  Riders make a turn during the Pro Men Criterium to finish out the 2010 Tour of Elk Grove. Mark Black/
Veterans participated in The Heart Of a Marine FoundationÂ’s Adaptive Athlete Race media day event on June 28. Courtesy of Heart Of A Marine Foundation

Tour of Elk Grove schedule

FRIDAY, AUG. 5 (4.5-mile time trial course)

3:30 p.m. Mayor's Charity Time-Trial (Every 60 seconds) <a href=""></a>

4:30 p.m. <a href="">Woodfield Chicago Northwest Convention Bureau</a> Pro Women Cat. 1/2 (Stage 1) Time-Trial

5:45 p.m. AXA Equitable Pro Men (Stage 1) Time-Trial

SATURDAY, AUG. 6 (1.2-mile criterium course; 9.5-mile road stage course)

8:30 a.m. Safe-Guard Basement Technologies Men's Cat. 5 (Heat 1)

9 a.m. Goose Island Brewpubs Men's Cat. 5 (Heat 2)

9:30 a.m. Rocco Vino Women's Cat 3/4

10:15 a.m. Suzuki Motors Corporation Cat. 4

11 a.m. McDonald's Cat. 3

12:15 p.m. Elk Grove Village Bank & Trust Cat. 1/2

2:15 p.m. Rotary Club Pro Women Cat. 1/2 Stage 2 Road Race

4 p.m. Chicago Blackhawks Pro Men Stage 2* (Road Stage)

SUNDAY, AUG. 7 (1.2-mile criterium course)

8 a.m. American Airlines Masters 35+ Men's Cat. 5

8:30 a.m. ManorCare Health Services Masters 35+ Cat. 3/4

9:30 a.m. Village Cycle Sport Masters 35+ Cat. 1/2

10:30 a.m. Heart of the Marine Foundation - Adaptive Athlete Race

11:10 a.m. Trustee Fun Ride

11:30 a.m. Shimano Big Wheel Race

12 p.m. SafeCo Insurance Category 1/2

1:45 p.m. Comcast Pro Women Cat. 1/2 Stage 3 Circuit Race

3:15 p.m. Gullo International Pro Men Circuit Race (Stage 3)

Alexian Brothers Men Overall Prize Money

Alexian Brothers Pro Women Overall

Pro Men Team Awards