This year would have seen the 34th edition of the Tour of the Gila, one of the few remaining iconic, internationally-known American stage races. Unfortunately, it was cancelled due to COVID-19, like so many other events. But organizers have announced a Virtual Tour of the Gila to be held on Zwift from May 22-24th! Here are the details…

Invitation-Only

The virtual Tour of the Gila is only open to invited men’s and women’s USA Cycling-registered domestic elite, UCI Pro and USA Crit teams.

Race Format

Like a true stage race, riders must complete each stage in order to start the next day.

  • Stage 1: Team Time Trial (TTT)
    Start Times: women’s team kick off at 5:45pm Mountain Time with the men’s team kick off at 7pm
  • Stage 2: Circuit race (67.4km), reminiscent of the Tour of the Gila Fort Bayard stage with a fast, flat finish
    Start Times: men start at 10:00am Mountain Time and women at noon Mountain time.
  • Stage 3: Queen stage (72.6km) – a challenging final stage on the Medio Fondo route that finishes atop the Epic KOM – similar to Tour of the Gila’s queen stage to Piños Altos.
    Start Times: men start at 10:00am Mountain Time and women at noon Mountain time.

Watch the Races Live

Zwift Community Live will be streaming the races, so check them out on Facebook or YouTube. Nathan Guerra and Dave Towle will be commentating.

About the Organizer

The Virtual Tour of the Gila is made possible by Project Echelon Racing. Eric Hill, who runs Project Echelon Racing, recognized how difficult the racing season was for riders and worked to create a virtual Redlands Classic which recently finished on Zwift. After a successful virtual Redlands, Hill shared, “Pulling together these events hasn’t been easy, but the effort has certainly been worth it as it is inspiring to see how the cycling community has come together in this unique way and how we have been able to help close the gap between e-sports and ‘In Real Life’ competition. It’s always good to be agile and think with an open mind. I truly believe that there is an opportunity for cycling to come out on top of the current COVID-19 situation if we do this right.”