TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - This year, those participating in the 37th annual El Tour de Tucson will have one last route to choose from.
On Wednesday, June 5 Board Members decided to cut the 75 mile option due to financial reasons.
El Tour de Tucson made the announcement on their Facebook page Friday afternoon saying:
"After much discussion we have decided to streamline the overall event and part of that is eliminating the 75-mile ride."
Historically the 75-mile option has seen the lowest numbers, and that continued into 2019. Pat Lopez, Chairman of the Board for Perimeter Bicycle Association, said out of the 900 riders registered so far this year, only 85 chose the 75-mile option.
Not to mention this route costs additional money in traffic control…
"It also has a section of the ride that goes off the main route which means we have to have separate traffic control and barricades.”
Last years route started at the park on Golf Links, just west of Craycroft and ended downtown. Lopez said they went over budget in 2018, spending $380,000 in traffic control.
El Tour tries to ease some of that cost with adding sponsors for each of the individual routes, but with the 75 mile one having the least riders, it’s been tough to find one.
"My guess is because it is the ride with the smallest participation,” said Lopez.
He said they do not know how much money will be saved from this decision just yet because every year the cost changes. Due to the routes having to be approved by the individual jurisdictions the routes go through.
"There are changes that they might require in the terms of traffic control and there might be some changes to the route based on road conditions or road construction.” said Lopez
But with the constant change of routes on a year to year basis, Lopez says it’s hard to know if this cut will be permanent.
“The ride changes every year and it changes based on what we hope to be the best route and ride for the community."
For those who have registered for the 75-mile option already you will be contacted by El Tour de Tucson staff to see if you would like to be placed in the 50-mile or 100-mile option.