No, this isn’t a scene from the outskirts of Rio. These are local racers, but that doesn’t mean they’re not serious about the sport, or so I gathered from watching and talking with family members and other race-followers and supporters.
In fact, these weekly races in Greenbelt Park are the ONLY sanctioned bike races in the DC area on weekdays, so they attract riders from several local groups, in addition to the team that’s in charge of this event – Route 1 Velo, sponsored by Arrow Bicycle in Hyattsville.
Promoter Jeff Travis (a Greenbelter) tells me these “great practice races” have been hosted by Greenbelt for 33 years now. “Practice” doesn’t mean casual, though, as you can see from these photos or by reading about the races on the park’s website: “It’s a Tour de France style type of race where the competitive juices flow.”
The races have been taking place from 6 to 8 pm every Wednesday during the racing season but there are just two more this summer, in case you’d like to catch them.