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Wilmington Grand Prix returns this weekend

Cyclists begin the Major Taylor Community Ride on N. Market Street in downtown Wilmington.
Butch Comegys
Cyclists begin the Major Taylor Community Ride on N. Market Street in downtown Wilmington.

The annual Wilmington Grand Prix is this weekend.

The three-day event is expected to draw pro riders from 15 states and three countries - according to event coordinator Julie Wenger.

“It’s pretty exciting, it’s high speed, it’s pretty thrilling," she says. "Even if you know nothing at all about bike racing, the adrenaline and the rush of seeing the peloton go past you is really pretty exciting.”

It all starts Friday at 5 pm with the Monkey Hill Time Trial and Kick-Off Party. The time trial is a 3.2-mile race against the clock through Brandywine Park, ending with live music, craft beer, and food trucks atop Monkey Hill.

Festivities move downtown Saturday. The Major Taylor Community Ride begins at 11:15 am. That’s followed by the Men’s and Women’s Pro races and two amateur races. There’s also a free street festival on Market Street from 11 am to 5 pm.

“It’s great to know that anyone can be a part of the Major Taylor Community Ride on Saturday," Wenger says. "If you’re just coming into downtown, the Wilmington Parking Authority lots are all free. You can see a parking map right on our website at wilmgrandprix.con for the best places to park as you’re coming into town.”

Sunday features the 11th Annual Governor’s Ride and 10th Annual Delaware Gran Fondo. Last year’s Gran Fondo drew cyclists from 18 states and five countries.

Wenger says the event brings the city a revenue boost.

“This brings lots of different kinds of folks into the city and into Market Street. This is definitely a great day to be doing business in the City of Wilmington.”

This is the event’s 15th year in Wilmington.

Rachel Sawicki was born and raised in Camden, Delaware and attended the Caesar Rodney School District. They graduated from the University of Delaware in 2021 with a double degree in Communications and English and as a leader in the Student Television Network, WVUD and The Review.