A long-time supporter of racing series’ throughout New England, Verge Sport will be headlining New England Crit Week in 2017. Beginning on June 18th with the Greenfield Criterium in Greenfield, MA, the series will bring racers across New England making stops in Exeter, NH (Exeter Classic), Thompson, CT (Thompson Cycling Grand Prix), and will conclude with a two-stage Longsjo Classic in Leominster and Fitchburg, MA on June 24th and 25, respectively. The support of Verge Sport is a significant development for the series, providing unity for racers, promoters, and the communities that host the events over eight days in mid June.
“We believe that sport builds community and embrace the opportunity to give back to and help build up the people and events that make up the Verge Global family. Verge Sport has deep competitive roots so when the opportunity to be involved with New England Crit Week arose the automatic response to be involved was YES!” says David Sommerville, Director of Verge America. With the backing of Verge Sport, the 2017 edition of New England Crit Week will feature team and individual omnium competitions with custom-designed Verge Sport leaders jerseys and socks awarded at each event.
The new support by Verge Sport follows a collective effort by the promoters of the individual races that make up New England Crit Week to provide a more compelling and competitive racing experience. “With high-caliber events pulling some of the top end racers to other parts of the country during the summer, providing a local race series that people get can really excited about and build their calendar around is important for nurturing the health of the local New England road racing scene,” says Lydia Hausle, Race Director of the Greenfield Criterium. In addition to retaining series sponsorship from Verge, the promoters of the individual races of New England Crit Week have banded together to build additional infrastructure to support the series, including a new and modernized website, an enlivened social media and branding plan, and the introduction of a Most Aggressive Rider competition for each race. The result is something quite special - a collection of races that will each maintain their unique, local-grown flare, but that collectively provide one organized series with more heightened competition and camaraderie.
Promoter of the Longsjo Classic, Alan Cote, is optimistic that the unification of the race series will provide an even stronger draw for local competitors in New England. "New England Criterium Week will be the biggest week of bike racing in the northeastern US this year,” said Cote. “With five events in eight days, capped with American Road Calendar events at the historic Longsjo races in Fitchburg, full fields are expected at all the races." New England Bicycle Racing Association (NEBRA) Administrator, JD Bilodeau, echoed Cote’s enthusiasm. "We are excited to have Verge Sport supporting some of the most historic races in New England. Located in the heart of our cycling community, the events in New England Criterium Week represent some of the best racing of the summer."
Find more information about New England Crit Week, including how to register, at www.NEcritweek.com. Follow along online @NECritWeek!
About Verge Sport: The inspiration behind Verge Sport came straight from the clothing needs of an elite athlete, Michael Magur. Racing in the European road cycling circuit throughout the early 1990s it became obvious to Michael that the custom technical apparel needs of athletes were outpacing what was being delivered — the wheels turned and Verge Sport was born in 1999. Verge Sport is knowledgable and confident about all levels of custom sublimation and technical garment production without being elitist or discouraging to new or less experienced cycling, running or nordic sport participants. We speak to the top-end technically minded consumer while remaining welcoming to technical garment new comers. Athletes across the world have worn Verge Sport garments on their way to the podium for nearly two decades. http://www.vergesport.com/us-en/
About the Art Longsjo Foundation: The Longsjo Classic is named after Arthur “Art” Matthew Longsjo, Jr. (October 23, 1931 – September 16, 1958), who was an American Olympian speed skater and cyclist. He was the first person to compete in the Summer and Winter Olympics in the same year. In 1958 Longsjo won three races, the Tour of Somerville, the Tour du St. Laurent stage race and the Quebec-Montreal Road Race. Art Longsjo died in 1958 following a car accident in Burlington, Vermont. He had been returning from the Quebec-Montreal Road Race. In 1960 the Fitchburg Longsjo Classic was held in Fitchburg in memory of Longsjo. The race is a road bicycle racing stage race and is still held annually. http://www.longsjo.com/wp/