For the third consecutive year the Town of Marana is sponsoring the El Tour de Tucson Perimeter Bike Race. It also marks the second year that the Town is hosting their own 28-mile segment of the race.
It is the 35th edition of the race, which according to race organizer Richard DeBernardis is the “longest running bicycle event in the state of Arizona.”
The annual press conference was held at the Mexican Consulate and DeBernardis said the idea is to make the race not only the pride of Tucson and Arizona, but Mexico as well.
“This is going to be the start of a long, great relationship,” DeBernardis said.
The race traditionally honors a person or persons who have contributed to the sport of cycling, philanthropy, or other positive endeavors. This year they honored Lila and Totten Warfield, who have been volunteering for 33 years and have celebrated over 70 years of marriage.
The Town of Marana shared the stage with race sponsors and community partners including Casino Del Sol, Easter Seals/Blake Foundation, Pima County Department of Transportation, and Tucson Medical Center.
“I want to express my excitement for this year’s El Tour De Tucson, and particularly for Marana’s 28-mile segment starting at the Marana Heritage River Park located in the heart of our Gladden Farms community,” said the Town of Marana’s Communications Manager Vickie Hathaway.” For the second year in a row, cyclists will see amazing views of the Tucson Mountain range, as well as discover Marana’s scenic open spaces as they ride toward the finish line."
Last year Marana welcomed over 350 racers to the Marana leg. The Marana leg boasts the shortest distance of any leg of the El Tour and was a major draw.
“Our shorter distance makes participating in the El Tour De Tucson more attractive for both younger and older riders, making it the perfect family experience for those seeking a less rigorous option, or for those wanting to test the waters for their first ride,” Hathaway said.
Marana’s proximity to Interstate-10, the Pima County Shared Use Path, and several great areas to ride, has allowed them to position themselves as a perfect “El Detour” before, after, and during the El Tour.
“Venture north onto Dove Mountain Blvd and take in the beauty of the Tortolita Mountains for your next training ride,” Hathaway said. “Enjoy music, food trucks and entertainment at our 28-mile Marana start, and celebrate your big finish by quenching your thirst with a locally brewed craft beer. Whether you’re a rider, spectator, or visitor, there are many things to do in Marana to prepare for and celebrate the race.”
Hathaway encouraged people to see DiscoverMarana.org/ElDeTour for hotel, restaurant, and after-party information.