By Cody Thompson

Messenger Reporter

CROCKETT – The adrenaline-filled world of bicycle racing returns to Crockett as the first USA Cycling-sanctioned, Davy Crockett Classic Bike Race is set to take place in downtown Crockett on Saturday, July 8 and Sunday, June 9. This race is the follow up to the bicycle race that took place in Crockett in January.

“We beta tested the ride in January and the views and feedback from the riders and officials were stellar,” USA Cycling representative and Grapeland resident Joel Franssen told the Messenger on Thursday. “Since then, we’ve had several requests to do more similar events.”

The two-day event will see riders from across the country gather at Crockett City Hall, located at 200 N Fifth St.

“In the January race, we had about 200 riders and several of them were national cycling champions,” Franssen said. “We’re expecting to double that number with this race.”

The first day of racing consists of training courses ranging from 30 miles to 100 miles starting at 8 a.m. on Thursday, July 8.

On the second day, riders will line up on the street in front of the city hall at 8 a.m. for a series of 1-mile criterium races around the downtown area.

“The first day is primarily a warm-up for the criterium races on Sunday,” Franssen said. “The real excitement comes during the criterium races: they’re high-speed, people will crash and you’ll get to see people flying off of their bikes.”

Franssen stated that the event was created as a way to not only spread more awareness about the world of bicycle racing, but to help increase Crockett’s economy.

“All of the riders and vendors that we will have help bring in tax revenues and help the local economy by staying in local hotels and motels,” Franssen said. “That’s the primary reason I wanted to start this event. I wanted to bring in an event that would kick up the local economy and bring in some money to the city.”

The event also will feature local and out-of-county food and arts & crafts vendors.

“The exciting part of this event is that we can tie in all of our local and out-of-county businesses together and get a lot of exposure,” Franssen said. “Other businesses will be coming in and they will be able to see all of the great things we have here in Houston County.”

Two of the featured local vendors are Chubby Dog Farm in Grapeland and Stesti Brewing Company in Lovelady.

“If you’ve never had Chubby Dog Farm’s pork then you are in for a treat. I don’t know what they do to it, but the flavor is stunning,” Franssen said. “After you’ve had your fill of Chubby Dog’s pork, you can wash it down with the amazing beers of Stesti Brewing Company.”

Franssen stated that there is still room for any local food or arts & crafts vendors to sign up for the event. To sign up to be a vendor, visit the Crockett Area Cycling Community Facebook page.

Timberland Medical Center will provide medics for the race.

For more information about the Davy Crockett Classic Bike Race, visit The Crockett Area Cycling Community Facebook page or the Davy Crockett Classic Bike Race Facebook page.

The Davy Crockett Classic Bike Race is sponsored by Local Bike Racing in Houston, Fort Bend Kia, Stesti Brewing Company, Muscles & Curves in Crockett, Cantu Cycling Wheels, Los Ranchos in Crockett, Moosehead Cafe in Crockett and Texas Farm Bureau Insurance.