The USA Cycling Masters Road National Championships begins today and will bring an estimated 1,000 cyclists to the Augusta area.
The four-day event will take place in downtown Augusta, Fort Gordon and the J. Strom Thurmond Dam in Columbia County. The Augusta Sports Council is host for the event.
Cyclists will compete for national championships in road, individual time trial and criterium disciplines.
The action begins today with a time trial at the Thurmond Lake Visitor Center, then continues Friday and Saturday with the road race at Fort Gordon.
The event concludes Sunday with the criterium in downtown Augusta.
USA Cycling previously held events in Augusta in 2011 and 2012.
“Augusta has played host to many national level events, including a previous edition of Masters and Amateur Nationals, along with the Tour de Georgia,” USA Cycling’s national events manager, Shawn Brett, said in a news release. “Competitors should expect proven and challenging course throughout the weekend.”
Today’s time trial will begin at 8 a.m. and will use an out-and-back course that utilizes U.S. Highway 221 (Clarks Hill Road) in South Carolina and Georgia. The “long” course will cross Washington Road and turn onto Cobbham Road. The “long” course will cross Thurmond Dam into Georgia. The “short” course will not cross Washington Road.
Cobbham Road is expected to be open at 2 p.m. and U.S. Highway 221 (Clarks Hill Road) will reopen at 6.
On Sunday, the criterium in downtown Augusta will begin at 937 Greene St. in front of the AT&T Building. All vehicles must be moved by 3 a.m. No parking is allowed in the following areas:
• Broad Street (eastbound) between 8th Street and 11th Street
• 11th Street from Broad Street to Greene Street
• 9th Street between Greene Street and Ellis Street
• Greene Street (westbound) between 8th Street and 11th Street
• 8th Street between Broad Street and Ellis Street
• Ellis Street from 8th Street and 9th Street