City of Lakeport, California

Bike Race: RPP Hobby Lakeport Twilight Criterium

Criterium action returns to the streets of downtown Lakeport under the lights June 30! Lakeport, CA:   For the second time in as many years, the streets of downtown Lakeport will be transformed into the newest stop in the Northern California‐Nevada Cycling Associations criterium racing calendar.  The event, dubbed the RPP Hobby Lakeport Twilight Criterium presented by Chevron and Power Market, will the year’s most exciting FREE event for the public to come and enjoy some of the most impressive bicycle road racing you have probably never heard of!   

A criterium, or “crit” for short, is a road bicycle race held on closed downtown city streets in front of thousands of cheering fans and spectators.  This year the schedule for the Lakeport downtown criterium has been adjusted so that the premier categories will be racing under the lights, adding a real “party atmosphere” to the event for spectators and a rare opportunity for the athletes that will be performing in front of large local crowds.

World class athletes will descend on Lakeport Saturday June 30, 2018 to race the .6 mile long loop that traverses Main Street turning right on Armstrong Street, then right again onto the short but steep pitch of Forbes street before descending at speeds in excess of 40MPH into the 90 degree right hand turn onto 4th Street and then right back onto Main Street.  The short yet steep climb up Forbes Street will provide some of the best viewing action for spectators as it often serves as a launch pad for the strongest riders to “attack” the field in attempt to separate themselves from their competitors.

Following a rider or group riders attack, the rest of the field must find the impetus to chase those riders down and bring him or her back the group or risk losing the overall race. Often times the impetus to chase down the leader(s) is provided by the officials ringing a cowbell and announcing to the passing group of athletes that the next lap is a “Prime” lap (pronounced “preme”).   On a prime lap, the first rider back across the start finish line on that LAP wins a prize that may be anything from bottle of local Lake County wine or up to $250 CASH!  Prime laps are used by the officials to control the tempo of a race and to disrupt individuals or teams from getting away from the rest of the racers by “going off the front” and riding away with an easy win.  Prime Laps keep the action high enhancing the spectator experience!

Each criterium class or in cycling ‐“category” begins as a timed event, with officials keeping track of the average lap times.  Using those average lap times, the officials will calculate how many laps the field will make by the end of the preset time.  When the calculations indicate there are approximately 10 laps to go, the race converts to laps and the officials will display “lap cards” to the field letting them know how many laps remain before the end of the race.  It is usually at this point that the over tempo and speed of the race begins to climb as the excitement of a pack sprint finish builds.  The fastest lap times of this year’s course are expected to be in the 1 minute 20 second range, which means the pro categories could be doing over 60 laps!

The first ever Lakeport Downtown Criterium was held in July 2017.  Athlete attendance was on the low side due mainly to the fact that the contingent of criterium racers on the west coast had no idea the tiny lakefront town of Lakeport even existed and July was extremely hot.  The athletes and teams that DID attend in 2017, were greeted with hospitality rarely seen at any other event, as well the beauty of downtown Lakeport and Clear Lake.  Those athletes left Lakeport in 2017 vowing to report back to others of this amazing new downtown crit and the diamond that was found in Lakeport and Lake County.  Through social media, images and reviews of Lakeport and the downtown criterium spread like wildfire, with athletes making early plans to attend in 2018.

New for 2018 is a schedule change and rebranding the event as the “RPP Hobby Lakeport TWILIGHT Criterium presented by Chevron & Power Market”.  By revising the race schedule so that the premier professional categories will start their racing at sunset, the event is now known as a “twilight crit”.  

Downtown “twilight” or “sunset” crits are becoming increasingly rare in the United States with Lakeport now being only 1 of 2 in Northern California. The biggest west coast sunset criterium is the San Rafael Sunset Criterium held every July in downtown San Rafael which is the event that the Lakeport Twilight Criterium is modeled after. Also new for 2018 will be a free race for kids sponsored and hosted by the Lake County Deputy Sheriff’s Association.  Local deputy Sheriff’s will be on hand to pass out official race bib numbers, ice cream and popsicles, medals and even cash prizes for the kids that make the “podium”!  Additionally, our sponsor Chevron and Power Market will be raffling off a new bike to one lucky spectator, so please come down to the Chevron booth to get your name in the drawing!  

This year’s event will feature local professional announcer Martin Scheel alongside Charles “Chuck” Hutcheson, former elite cyclist well know cycling personality from the Herbalife24/MarcPro Strava Race team, calling all the action while playing some great music. O’Meara Brothers brewery is the official beer of the Lakeport Twilight Criterium and will be featured along with several Lake County wineries providing beer and wine at the beer garden.  VIP access passes will be available for sale that gives spectators access to covered trackside seating on the start finish line and includes hosted beer, wine and pizza delivered by Stonefire Pizza.

Please come to downtown Lakeport to join the party  on the afternoon of Saturday June 30, 2018, get a FREE cowbell, and other schwag, line Main Street and the Forbes Street climb and be witness to some of the best free sporting entertainment Lakeport has to offer! To learn more visit www.lakeportcrit .com and follow @lakeportcrit on instagram and RPP Hobby Lakeport Twilight Criterium on Facebook for up to the minute information.

*** This is event is organized and hosted by Main Street Elite Cycling Team, a Lakeport based 501c3 Non‐profit charity.  Proceeds from this event benefit local competitive cyclists focusing on youth cycling development.  Membership is open to all and we are actively seeking new teen members interested in becoming involved in competitive cycling. For information on how to become a member email



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