4:31 p.m. Kiel Reijnen of the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team has come out on top at this year’s Parx Casino Philly Cycling Classic men’s race for the second year in a row.
This year, however, race day marked his 28th birthday. He rode in to a crowd of cheering spectators and cowbells waiting for racers at the top of the famous Manayunk Wall.
Check back tomorrow morning for a full look of today’s race and related events.
4:16 p.m. Announcers are noting that this year’s race is showing a record level of spectator turnout.
Volunteer George Chisholm of Southwest Philly has been at the race since 8 a.m.
“[The race is] definitely not something you experience every day. It’s a great event for Philadelphia,” he said.
3:38 p.m. With less than three laps left to go, hometown favorite Robin Carpenter remains in second place behind Hincapie Sportswear Development Cycling teammate Joey Rosskopf.
Meanwhile, fans of the race are enjoying a beautiful Sunday afternoon on the sidelines of the race.
At the Sprint Zone on Kelly Drive and Midvale Avenue, Kurt Byer of Manayunk said, “There’s so many great people from the area that celebrate this amazing race. It’s great to see the usual action on Kelly Drive adding onto the race.”
Mar and Dan McGettigan added that after living in East Falls for 50-plus years, they come back whenever they can for the race.
At the Strawberry Mansion Fields, Kathy Robins said, “We’ve just been walking all day to different spots while having all the bikes race by us. We’ve had the dogs and the kids out all day. It’s beautiful for this event.”
2:15 p.m. Joey Rosskopf, who placed third in last year’s race is leading the way, closely followed by Manayunk native Robin Carpenter.
1:15 p.m. Inside the VIP tent, executive director of the Manyunk Development Corporation, Jane Lipton, is enjoying the day with her family.
It’s “amazing to see something that was on the brink of being shut down five years ago to come full circle,” she said, adding that folks once on “anti bike-race committees” have now joined “pro bike-race committees.”
“It’s a testament to what the communities of Roxborough, Manayunk and East Falls can accomplish.”
12:25 p.m Inside the VIP tent, Harriet Stevens, the mother of women’s race champ Evelyn Stevens, said at the age of 31, Evelyn has only been cycling for about six years after suffering a running injury.
“We are so proud of her. She’s a good woman. She deserves this,” she said.
12 p.m. Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter blew the starting horn to signal the start of the men’s race.
About 200 racers will compete over the course of 120 miles in today’s men’s race.
Manayunk native and cyclist Robin Carpenter was spotted at the starting line donning a graduation cap. The 21 year-old is also graduating from Swarthmore College today.
The men’s award ceremony is expected to start around 4 p.m.
11 a.m. American Evelyn Stevens has crossed the finish line and placed first in the women’s race for the second year in a row. She was followed by Lex Albrecht and Lauren Hall.
The men’s race will begin at noon.
10:45 a.m. While the women’s race is approaching its end, there is lots of activity at the expo above the wall where there is food, raffles, free prizes and more.
Steve and Michelle Bertram came to the race with sons Ryan, Jack and Griffin.
“We’re having so much fun,” said Ryan. It was their first year attending the race.
9:35 a.m. The women’s race is well underway and U.S. National Champion Allison Powers is leading the way.
The police presence is heavy in Northwest Philadelphia today as cops try to ensure public partying and rowdiness is kept to a minimum. Police forces staffed multiple corners along Lyceum Avenue on Saturday night to try and curb pre-race partying.
Don Simon, president of the Central Roxborough Civic Association said, “All was pretty quiet last night. Nothing more than the usual Saturday noise.”
8:35 a.m. The women’s race has set off. State rep. Pam DeLissio welcomed racers at the starting line. “Welcome to beautiful Roxborough….good luck and have a great ride,” she said.
8:10 a.m. Energy is ramping up at the start line as participants in this year’s women’s race begin to line up. The women’s race, comprising of about 100 participants, is set to begin at 8:30 a.m. and will total 60 miles.
Longtime volunteer Melvin Moore is ready for the day. “I am so excited. It’s a beautiful day. I’m ready,” he said.
6:45 a.m. Participants in this year’s Velothon — the 45K amateur race — have taken off from the starting line. The course will take place on entirely closed roads and do one-and-a-half loops of the Parx Casino Philly Cycling Classic pro-bike course including the iconic Manayunk Wall and Lemon Hill.
The women’s race is slated to start at 8:30 a.m. and will feature approximately 100 riders competing on 21 teams.
Emily Brooks, Bas Slabbers, Michelle Barrett and Neema Roshania contributed to this report.