(Updated at 1:20 p.m.) Hundreds of cyclists will descend on Clarendon and Crystal City for the Air Force Association Cycling Classic this weekend.
The two-day event boasts multiple races, with a men’s and women’s professional cycling race in each neighborhood. There will also be multiple amateur races, kids races and a challenge ride.
On Saturday, the highlight of the event is the Clarendon Cup, a professional/amateur course that takes cyclists through the heart of Clarendon. The course is known as one of the most difficult in the United States, according to the association.
The event starts at 8 a.m. with amateur races from 8-9:50 a.m. The women’s professional teams will race at 10 a.m., and the men’s professional teams will take the course at noon. In between the two professional races is the kid’s race at 11:35 a.m.
Arlington cycling enthusiasts can block out their morning or decide to come for a couple of the races, said Emily Helpern, a PR rep. She recommends viewers watch near the start/finish line, where the main stage is located, at the intersection of Wilson Boulevard N. Herndon Street.
On Sunday, the event moves to Crystal City and starts at 7 a.m. with a non-competitive challenge ride. After the ride concludes, the men’s pro teams will start the Crystal City Cup races at 10:20 a.m, followed by a kid’s race at 12:25 p.m., the women’s pro race at 12:35 p.m. and amateur races at 1:45 p.m.
Helpern also recommends spectators watch from the start/finish line on Crystal Drive between 20th and 23rd Streets S.
Those willing to brave some of Arlington’s hottest days should plan on using the Metro to get down to the course and get off at the Clarendon or Crystal City stations, both of which are on the Blue Line. There will be some public parking on Saturday and parking is free at the Crystal City’s underground public garages.
Residents may want to avoid driving in Clarendon and Crystal City as a result of the races. Many of the roads, including Wilson Boulevard and Clarendon Boulevard, will be closed.
The following roads will be closed from 4:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday for the Clarendon Cup:
- Wilson Boulevard, from Fillmore Street to Washington Boulevard
- Clarendon Boulevard, from Washington Boulevard to N. Fillmore Street
- Washington Boulevard, from Wilson Boulevard to N. Highland Street
- N. Highland Street from Wilson Boulevard to Washington Boulevard
- N. Garfield/N. Fillmore Streets from Wilson Boulevard to Washington Boulevard
The following roads will be closed from 4:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday for the Crystal City Cup:
- Crystal Drive, from 15th Street S. through 23rd Street S.
- Wilson Boulevard, from N. Kent Street to the ramp to Route 110
- S. Clark Street, from 20th Street S. to 23rd Street S.
- 20th Street S., from Crystal Drive to S. Clark Street
- 18th Street S., from Crystal Drive to Bell Street
- 23rd Street S., from Crystal Drive to S. Clark Street
- Crystal Drive (west side), from 23rd Street S. to the Century Center Parking Garage
The ramps from Memorial Avenue, to Route 110 and Route 27 on the GW Parkway will be closed Sunday, June 14, from 5 a.m. to noon.
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