Cyclists make the turn from Griffin Avenue onto Kasey Kahne Drive during last year’s criterium, one element of the annual State Race. File photo by Ray Still.

Cyclists make the turn from Griffin Avenue onto Kasey Kahne Drive during last year’s criterium, one element of the annual State Race. File photo by Ray Still.

Cyclists take center stage, and fill roads, during weekend Stage Race

Busy streets of downtown Enumclaw will be closed Saturday, so plan accordingly.

The Mutual of Enumclaw Stage Race bring two things to downtown Enumclaw: some exciting, two-wheeled racing action and detours around some busy streets.

This year’s event will take place Saturday and Sunday, May 18-19, and will deliver the same level of quality racing that cycling fans have come to expect.

The Enumclaw event – the longest-running stage race in the Pacific Northwest and operating under the auspices of USA Cycling – offers cash prizes that top out at $2,000 for pro riders.

As always, races will cover roadways throughout the Enumclaw area. An early stage, for example, begins at 7 a.m. Saturday at the Enumclaw Expo Center and features a flat, 6.5-mile course that circles Mount Peak.

The more-visible criterium gets rolling at 1 p.m. Saturday and dominates downtown.

The criterium start/finish line is on Railroad Street and Myrtle Avenue. Riders cover a figure-eight course of nearly a mile, using Railroad Street, Griffin Avenue, Kasey Kahne Drive, Washington Avenue, Cole Street and Battersby Avenue, before finishing with a return sprint on Railroad.

Motorists should be aware that portions of all those streets will be closed for a large portion of Saturday.

Sunday’s road race will again have competitors starting, and finishing, in downtown Enumclaw. The course uses both rural roads and state Route 410 and – unlike the criterium – the roads remain open to vehicular traffic.

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