Cyclists Ride A Tough Race At Snake Alley Criterium - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Cyclists Ride A Tough Race At Snake Alley Criterium

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BURLINGTON, IA – Hundreds of cyclists rode through Downtown Burlington for the 32nd Annual Snake Alley Criterium. Many say this is one of the toughest races in the Midwest.

The race includes an uphill climb of Snake Alley, what the course is named after. 

Sarah Szefi came from Chicago, IL with her team. She says, “That hill is just terrible and it just keeps going up. And it’s not very smooth. The whole thing is hard.”

Riders had to go up Snake Alley multiple times depending on their individual race. Today there were cyclists of all ages, from nine to over sixty.

Tyler Reynolds is twelve-years-old and this is his third time competing at Snake Alley. He says, “The adrenaline – and your legs feel like they’re going to pop and then you get to the top.”

The uneven brick terrain was more challenging for some than for others.

Max Wiltse, 14-years-old, says the climb was his favorite part. “The hill – the snake alley itself – it was good for me because I’m really good at climbing.” Snake Alley is the type of climb he prepares for.

With the bumpy terrain, there are also people who took a fall when going up Snake Alley. But whether a new racer or experienced, riding solo or with a team, the feeling of accomplishment at the end was certain.

Katie Kelter came all the way from Kansas City with her team.  She says, “It’s really exciting especially when you have your teammates here cheering you on and you feel like it’s a group accomplishment.”

Mark Wiltse from Urbandale, Iowa, agrees, “It’s awfully painful at the time, but as soon as it’s done you feel a sense of accomplishment. You forget about the pain and you’re ready to go again.”

The Melon City Criterium is tomorrow in Muscatine, and the Quad Cities Criterium will be on Monday in Davenport.

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