2011 Bike Race fun facts

The audio slideshow above is a glimpse of last year’s Philadelphia International Cycling Championship. 

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Here is a list of fun facts about the race compiled by the Pro Cycling Tour organizers.  

• Spectator estimates were 50,000 in 1985 and over 300,000 today.

• The average speed of the riders is approximately 25 miles per hour for the entire 156 mile race.

• A rider’s average speed up the wall is 8 to 18 miles per hour, depending upon the rider, which lap, and what their role is on the team.

• The Manayunk Wall is a steep one-half mile climb.

• The Manayunk Wall was chosen and named by Jerry Casale and David Chauner in 1985.

• What’s the hardest part of the wall? It’s not the climb, it’s after the climb when the attacks begin.

• Cycling is a team sport. Most people think it’s an individual sport.

• There is usually one team leader per team. Often any one of four members is pre-designated to win and all day the plan is to set up the “leaders” to win.

• Nearly every year, there has been an early breakaway — a small group of riders that gets ahead of the larger main group and attempts to stay away until the finish. Even with a lead as high as eleven minutes, such breakaways are usually caught in the closing miles of the race.

• Riders shave their legs because it is easier to rub liniments in their legs during massage and also before racing in cold weather. In cases of crashes, it’s easier with a bare leg for treatment.

• Average cyclist on a hot, humid day, can lose up to 3 liters of fluid per hour. They should consume 2 or 3 water bottles per hour during the TD Bank Philadelphia International Championship to stay hydrated.

• Average amount of calories pro riders need to consume is 4000 calories, just for race to maintain energy. An average 140 lb. cyclist will burn about 700 calories per hour.

• Average pro racer has about 5 to 8 percent body fat compared to Shaquille O’Neal who has 15 percent body fat. Most non-elite athletes are around 20 percent.

• Moto drivers “day jobs” include doctors, lawyers, policemen, accountants, artists, crane operators, school teachers, computer programmers.

• 500 volunteers will help put on the nation’s largest single day all pro cycling race. • 300 police officers will help control traffic and keep the crowds from going too crazy. • 20,000 feet of barricades will be set.

• The average time to set up the race is 6 days and the time to take down is 3 days.

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