It has been the chatter of Richmond for several years as the city and surrounding areas prepared for a world-class cycling event. Now it’s only 51 days away.
For the first time in 30 years, the nine-day Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) Road World Championships cycling event will be held in the United States and, even better, it will take place in Richmond from September 19-27, 2015. Cyclists from around the world will converge on Virginia’s capital city for this annual competition that will feature the best cycling has to offer including 12 Championship races for Elite Men and Women.
As described on the website, “It is a rare opportunity for the athletes to compete for their country, just as they do during the Olympic Games. Athletes compete in three different disciplines including the traditional Road Race, the Individual Time Trial and the recently introduced Team Time Trial. World Champions are crowned in each discipline.”
Here is today’s press release from Governor Terry McAuliffe’s office:
Governor McAuliffe announced today that the Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) will partner with Richmond 2015, the organizer of the nine-day UCI Road World Championships cycling event to be held in Richmond this September. This is the first time in nearly 30 years that the race has taken place in the United States. Event staging and visitor spending are estimated to contribute $158 million in economic impact.
“The tourism industry is an important component of building a new Virginia economy, and the UCI World Championships present a tremendous opportunity for the Commonwealth to drive economic development, promote tourism, and showcase Virginia as a premier travel destination to consumers worldwide,” said Governor McAuliffe. “This partnership will give the Virginia Tourism Corporation an unparalleled platform to showcase the beauty and diversity of Virginia to visitors, as well as to audiences around the world who are tuning in at home. We are proud to partner with Richmond 2015 for this significant moment in Virginia’s history.”
As part of the partnership, VTC will air at least 500 30-second commercials across U.S. domestic television broadcasts on Universal Sports, NBC Sports Network, CNBC, and NBC. Viewers will learn about Virginia as an exceptional travel destination with authentic travel experiences such as outdoor recreation, beaches, mountains, Virginia wine and oysters, and a robust culinary scene. VTC also will have editorial broadcast coverage for Virginia-related tourism content during domestic race broadcasts.
VTC’s iconic “Virginia is for Lovers” brand will have prominent placements throughout all footprints of the race, including major visibility and branding at the race finish line, time trial start ramps, sign-in stage, awards podium, press conference backdrops, and event credentials. VTC’s instantly-recognizable “LOVE” artworks will be installed around the courses.
“This is an extraordinary opportunity to bring revenue to the Commonwealth and show the world why Virginia is for Lovers,” said Maurice Jones, Secretary of Commerce and Trade. “Virginia’s natural beauty, booming culinary scene, incredible outdoor recreation opportunities and historical significance make it a world-class destination for travelers. The UCI World Championships will inspire thousands of people around the globe to plan their next vacation in Virginia.”
“The World Championships represent one of cycling’s pinnacle events, with more than 1,000 of the world’s top cyclists competing for 12 world championships over nine days of racing,” said Wilson Flohr, CEO of Richmond 2015. “They also represent a unique opportunity to showcase all that the Richmond region and Virginia have to offer to a worldwide television audience in the hundreds of millions.”
The partnership also represents an unprecedented multi-agency collaboration at the state and local levels, led by the Office of the Governor, Secretary of Commerce and Trade, Secretary of Administration, Secretary of Public Safety, Secretary of Technology, Secretary of Transportation, Virginia Tourism Corporation, Richmond Region Tourism, City of Richmond Economic Development, City of Richmond, Richmond Police, Richmond Mayor’s Office, and State Police.
About the Virginia Tourism Corporation
Tourism is an instant revenue generator in Virginia. In 2014, visitors spent $22.4 billion, which supported 216,000 jobs and contributed $1.5 billion in state and local taxes. VTC’s beloved brand, Virginia is for Lovers, celebrated its 45th anniversary in 2014. Virginia is for Lovers was inducted into the Madison Avenue Advertising Walk of Fame in 2009, and was named one of the top ten marketing campaigns of all time by Forbes magazine.
The Virginia Tourism Authority, doing business as the Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) is an organization of more than 70 professionals working in the Richmond office and at 11 Welcome Centers throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. The overriding goal of all of VTC’s activities is to “serve the broader interests of the economy of Virginia by supporting, maintaining and expanding the Commonwealth’s domestic and international inbound tourism and motion picture production industries in order to increase visitor expenditures, tax revenues and employment.”
Or, stated another way, our goal is “more people, staying longer, spending more money.”
About Richmond 2015, Inc.
Richmond 2015, Inc., is the independent nonprofit corporation responsible for the organization, management and promotion of the 2015 UCI Road World Championships. Partners of Richmond 2015 include Altria, Anthem, CarMax, ChildFund International, Cushman & Wakefield | Thalhimer, Davenport & Company, Dominion, Genworth, Hourigan Construction, Hunton & Williams, Kings Dominion, Lansing Building Products, MARTIN’S Food Markets, MWV, McGuireWoods, Norfolk Southern, PIASCIK, The Community Foundation, TowneBank, University of Richmond, VCU Medical Center and Williams Mullen.
In addition to its corporate partners, the Commonwealth of Virginia, the City of Richmond, Hanover County and Henrico County are all key partners of Richmond 2015. For more information about Richmond 2015 visit www.Richmond2015.com and connect on Twitter and Facebook.
About the 2015 UCI Road World Championships
The 2015 UCI Road World Championships, cycling’s pinnacle event, will be held Sept. 19-27, 2015 in Richmond, Va., and is expected to attract as many as 450,000 onsite spectators from the Richmond region and across the globe over the course of the nine-day event as well as a worldwide TV audience in the hundreds of millions. More than 1,000 cyclists – Elite Men and Women, Under-23 Men and Junior Men and Women – from more than 70 countries will compete in three disciplines: the traditional Road Race, Individual Time Trial and Team Time Trial. The event, which is being held in the United States for the first time since 1986, culminates with the traditional road races on Sept. 26 (women) and Sept. 27 (men).
It’s going to be an exciting September in RVA!