EDITOR’S DESK: Horses and bicycles – just passing through
It's not every day at this newspaper that two undeniably similar themes present themselves at the same time. And, of course, when they do, we pounce with all the layout fervor we can muster. The “twin” stories this week became obvious early on. I could hardly believe our luck - the Westside's luck, I mean - to
have two notable events coming up this summer that will be finding their way to (and through) the very heart of our locale.
What's also kind of neat is that along with the similarites between the Range Ride and the USA Pro Cycling Challenge's Prologue race, there are some bemusing dissimilarities. I mean, horses and bicycles? All we'd need to top that is to schedule the annual Car Show in Old Colorado City the day before the Prologue... Wait, you say the Car Show actually is scheduled the day before? So in less than 24 hours, the avenue from 23rd to 27th Street will be transformed from wall-to-wall classic vehicles to none at all (except perhaps those driven by Prologue race officials). Not even parked cars will be allowed along the race route.
Clearly, between the Ride and the Challenge, the latter promises the more profound chance for the city to shine. The Prologue is the first stage in a race that would seem to rival, in its picturesque settings and tests of endurance, any multi-day race in Europe. But I'm not the guy to make those kinds of nuanced comparisons. What I want to see is how fast these world-class cyclists can get going down Colorado Avenue, once they shift into their highest gears and start pumping like mad for the downtown finish line.
The only drawback to the Range Ride is that it's so early. Most stores won't even be open when the 130 or so citizens on horseback mosey through at about 9 a.m. I realize the Ride traditionally follows the even-earlier downtown Street Breakfast, but if the goal is to promote the Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo, why not put off the Ride two or three hours, then show up for a midday meet-and-greet, maybe even autographs for the kids in Bancroft Park? Not to mention shopping in the stores (preferably those that advertise with us)! The more I think about it, the Range Riders are our home-grown attraction. They could do more for local business in the long run than two or three days of international bicycle tourists.