Just before Christmas the OCA released its preliminary schedule for the 2015 season. There are some notable changes in the format of the Ontario-Cup series with some new races added and some others removed. The Pan Am games certainly had an affect on the scheduling of races, particularly the Provincial Championships. Last year provincials were held at the end of June but have now been bumped to the end of may because of the Pan Am games to take place in mid July. The Provincial Road championships will be held in Hunstville this year in lieu of the Lake of Bays O-Cup. Expect the climbers to shine at provincials this year.
Another notable change is the inclusion of the Barrie Downtown Criterium (date TBD). Being a native of the Barrie area this is exciting news and will be a great boost for cycling in the Simcoe county area. The City of Barrie and its cycling clubs have been working hard the past few years to develop a lively cycling community. The race will be hosted by the Simcoe/Barrie Cycling Club and we should expect to see a strong presence from not only their riders but also riders from the Newmarket Eagles Cycling Club, a competitive club with an abundance of strong riders.
The Via Italia appears at the beginning of September leaving nearly a month between Nationals and the Provincial Criterium Championship. Unlike previous years, the Ciociaro Crit and the Via Italia will not be held on the same weekend now separated by almost a month on the 2015 schedule. The Via Italia will serve as the provincial criterium championships while Ciociaro will be an Ontario Cup race only.
With the construction of Milton the OCA has incorporated two track O-Cup races into the late winter/early spring schedule. With a $30 entry fee and a brand new track/facility for racing, it should make these two races very popular. Until then, racers can sharpen their track skills at one of Forest City Velodrome’s weekly races.
You can view a PDF of the preliminary schedule here.