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Reminder: Oak Ridge to host USA Cycling Time Trial Championships; traffic impact information

The USA Cycling Professional Road, Individual Time Trial (ITT) and Criterium National Championships will be held in the Knoxville and Oak Ridge from June 21-24, 2018.  In partnership with Visit Knoxville, the City of Oak Ridge is proud to host the ITT National Championships on scenic Melton Lake Drive.

The championships kick off in Oak Ridge on June 21 with the ITT.  The course is a 7-mile section of roadway that encompases a portion of Melton Lake Drive and Union Valley Road.  The professional and elite women will complete two laps for a total distance of 14.1 miles.  The professional and elite men will complete three laps for a total distance of 21.25 miles.  The course is relatively flat with three technical u-turns, allowing spectators to see athletes pass multiple times from one viewing location.

As the ‘race of truth,’ the ITT is distinct in its format for participants to race against the clock rather than in a big group against each other.  Both women and men will compete in waves, with each individual rider being separated at the start by a one-minute gap.  In the women’s event, the top U23 women (under the age of 23) will be awarded a separate championship.

For more information, a full schedule of events, and course maps click here (https://legacy.usacycling.org/2018/ pro-road-crit-time-trial-nationals).  For information on volunteer opportunities, click here (https://www.volunteeretn.org/visitknoxville).

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED:  

Volunteers are needed for this event. This is a great way to get involved and watch the world’s best cyclists!  For more information on volunteering, email Heather Fawver at hfawver@knoxville.org or visit www.usacycleknox.com.

TRAFFIC IMPACT 

On Thursday, June 21, a significant portion of Melton Lake Drive (MLD) will be shut down to through traffic in order to provide a closed-loop course for the ITT.

Melton Lake Drive Impact:

Phase 1 shutdown at 7AM.  A section of MLD will be closed from Amanda Dr. to Emory Valley Rd to facilitate course setup.  At this time, traffic will be able to turn left from Amanda Dr. onto MLD.  Traffic will be able to turn right from Emory Valley Rd onto MLD.

Phase 2 shutdown at 8AM.  Additional sections of MLD along with the east end of Union Valley Rd. will be shut down to complete the closed-course loop.  MLD will be closed from Palisades Pkwy to Rolling Links Blvd (see course map).  Residents may turn left from Palisades Pkwy onto MLD.  The Rivers Run Blvd entrance onto MLD will be closed. All residents entering and exiting the Rivers Run neighborhood must use the Rolling Links Blvd entrance.

Emory Valley Road Impact:

Emory Valley Road will not have road closures but traffic will not be able to turn either way onto Melton Lake Dr from Emory Valley Rd.

Reopening of MLD:  

Melton Lake Dr. to be completely reopened by 6:00pm.

Spectator Access:

The time trial event is a great way for cycling enthusiasts to see some fantastic racing up close.  Spectators are encouraged to come out and watch professional cyclists race this challenging course. “It takes a lot of practice just understanding the physiology, biomechanics and aerodynamics to succeed in time trial cycling” says Jim Miller, V.P. of Athletics at USA Cycling.  Event parking is accessible via Emory Valley Rd to the intersection of Emory Valley Road and Melton Lake Dr.  Spectators will be directed to cross over the course and into the venue parking area as the opportunity arises between cyclists.  This applies to leaving the parking area as well.

For more information, a full schedule of events, and course maps click here (https://legacy.usacycling.org/2018/ pro-road-crit-time-trial-nationals).  For information on volunteer opportunities, click here (https://www.volunteeretn.org/visitknoxville).

About Jim Harris

Jim Harris has been WYSH's News & Sports Director since 2000. In addition to reporting local news, he is the play-by-play voice for Clinton High School football, boys' and girls' basketball and baseball. Catch Jim live weekdays beginning at 6:20 am for live local news, sports, weather and traffic plus the Community Bulletin Board, shenanigans with Ron Meredith and more on the Country Club Morning Show on WYSH & WQLA. Jim lives in Clinton with his wife Kelly and daughter Carolina, his mother-in-law and cats Lucius and Oliver.

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