U.S. Paralympics Cycling today announced the dates and locations for its four domestic cycling events set to take place in 2021 ahead of the Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 scheduled for next summer. The national calendar opens with the U.S. Paralympics Cycling Open presented by Toyota held April 17-18, 2021 in Huntsville, Alabama. More than 100 athletes are expected to compete at Cummings Research Park, which will serve as the second selection race as cyclists seek qualification for Tokyo 2020.
“Huntsville is honored to host a world-class event for the U.S. Paralympics Cycling Open in 2021,” said Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle. “We’re a city that embraces a competitive spirit in all that we do, and the Paralympics adds another dimension to a community that respects and admires high performance. We’re excited for the opportunity to experience the skill, determination and athletic prowess of these outstanding athletes and for all those who dare to dream and excel.”
Ian Lawless, director of U.S. Paralympics Cycling, and three-time Paralympian Oz Sanchez will join Battle at 1:30 p.m. CT today (Dec. 3) for a virtual press conference announcing the event locally.
“We are thrilled that the City of Huntsville is hosting the 2021 U.S. Paralympics Cycling Open presented by Toyota,” said Dedra DeLilli, group manager, Olympic and Paralympic Marketing, Toyota Motor North America. “Huntsville means a lot to us at Toyota, so it’s great to see that the city will play such an important role by hosting this event. As a proud partner of Team USA and U.S. Paralympics Cycling, we look forward to extending Toyota hospitality to the athletes and event staff. I know our exceptional Team Members at Toyota Alabama are excited for such an important event for Team USA to take place in their city.”
Following an array of international events across Europe, athletes will return to home soil for the rescheduled U.S. Paralympics Team Trials, which acts as the final qualification opportunity for cyclists to be named to the 2020 U.S. Paralympic Team roster. Cycling events are set to be held June 18-20, 2021 along the West River Parkway in downtown Minneapolis.
Athletes will have two remaining competitions before the season culminates in Tokyo. Track cyclists will head to Carson, California, June 29 – July 4 for the 2021 Para-cycling Track National Championships held in conjunction with USA Cycling. The 2021 Para-cycling Road National Championships, the final domestic competition for the season, will take place July 8-10 in Boise, Idaho, in partnership with USA Cycling and the Challenged Athletes Foundation.
“After an unprecedented 2020 season, we’re excited to be able to resume competition safely in 2021 and give our athletes opportunities to get back on the road and track as they prepare for an important year,” said Lawless. “We’re incredibly grateful to have partners such as Toyota, USA Cycling, Challenged Athletes Foundation and our gracious host cities who are helping to make it happen.”
U.S. Paralympics Cycling continues to monitor the situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, following guidance from the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee, local authorities and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention when making decisions regarding the status of U.S. Paralympics Cycling events. Any changes to the competition schedule will be communicated through USParaCycling.org.
More information on the full international calendar and Tokyo 2020 can be found here.