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The HUB: Event preview - Harbor Master Criterium bike race

Catch New Orleans' premiere cycling race on Sunday, April 26 (photo: Michael Boedigheimer)

Catch New Orleans' premiere cycling race on Sunday, April 26 (photo: Michael Boedigheimer)

On Sunday, April 26, the Semi-Tough Cycling Club and Yeah You Ride will bring the city one of New Orleans’ most exciting bicycle racing events. The Harbor Master Criterium, presented by Massey’s Outfitters, will take riders cruising back into the scenic South Shore Harbor Marina on Lake Pontchartrain, promising hours of exciting racing action on a uniquely challenging and spectator-friendly course. From 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., the region’s best cyclists in 7 skill categories will square off to see which ones will walk away with the title of Harbor Master, as well as a share of the prize loot: $3000 in cash and goodies.

The style of the race -- a criterium -- is the most popular format of bicycle racing in the United States. Consisting of many quick laps over a technically challenging track, this type of race allows spectators to get extremely close to the action as teams of riders work together to execute strategic maneuvers, vying for a win.

This specific course -- which includes exciting vistas in the shade of the oak and palm trees that line the waterfront venue -- should prove challenging to riders and entertaining to spectatorsWinding through the expansive parking area of a defunct casino, the Harbor Master’s race course features many demanding turns -- from fast and sweeping to tight and technical, and a couple of short straightaways provide racers with the chance to stretch their legs and show off for the crowd.

The host of this race, Semi-Tough Cycling Club, prides itself on being “dedicated to the seriously casual cyclist,” and is no stranger to mixing a fair amount of leisure into the sport. This year, local food truck favorite La Cocinita will be on site to satisfy hungry racers and spectators, while Pabst Blue Ribbon returns to sponsor the suds. lululemon athletica will be running a silent auction of their snazziest items, with proceeds going to the Pablove Foundation and RUBARB.

Sea breeze, cold drinks and big thrills await. Join the crew this coming Sunday, April 26 and discover why the Harbor Master is one of New Orleans’ best criterium racing event.

Event vitals:

Where: South Shore Harbor Marina; 6701 Stars and Stripes Blvd, New Orleans

When: 8 a.m. - 3 p.m.

How much: Spectators: free and open to the public; Riders: $30 entry/ $35 day of entry

View an event preview below:

This article is part of THE HUB, a collaborative space for bike enthusiasts of every type -- from racers to tricksters, explorers to commuters. As new cycling-oriented events and issues arise in NOLA, HUB contributors take the mic and talk bike on NolaVie. Here you'll get information on events, new stylings, local biker profiles, and commentary on the two-wheel life.