Suburbs Stage Another First-Class Event
If the Alexian Brothers Tour of Elk Grove proved anything last weekend, it's that the bicycle race is fast becoming one of the jewels of suburban events.
In only its fifth year, the three-day race through the streets of the village is quickly taking its place alongside the venerable Arlington Million, longtime community festivals such as Naperville's Rib Fest and a host of other must-see annual events that make our suburbs a unique place to live, work and play.
What may be most impressive about the Tour is its relative meteoric rise from birth to its place in the sport of competitive cycling in half a decade.
Over the weekend, the Tour again attracted large crowds of spectators and top racers locally and from around the world, including a pro field of up to 200 riders and $5,000 bicycles featuring fancy aerodynamic wheels.
Competitors had nothing but praise for the course and the event as a whole.
"This is easily the best-organized race I've been in," said Dave Kiel of Arlington Heights, who doubled up to win the first two men's events on Saturday.
"It's a beautiful course," said Phil Collin of Golf, who led the men's heat for a while Saturday. "This boulevard's really pretty."
And the three-stage race was challenging.
Last week, the Daily Herald's night news editor, Neil Holdway, and photographer Paul Michna, who has actual racing experience at this level, previewed the road stage of the course that requires not only speed but technical skill. …