If you’ve never seen a serious bicycle race in person, this Sunday will be your chance to see one up close and personal when the annual Burlingame Criterium race takes place in downtown Burlingame. These racers are serious as they whiz by in high speed making fast turns around the track. Incorporated in the Criterium is the 8th Annual Ryan Phua Memorial Kids Ride for children 12 and under to race on the same course the adults will use. There is no charge for children to race but parents are being asked to make a donation to the Ryan Phua Memorial Fund which has been established through the Lance Armstrong Foundation, to fund cancer related programs in the Bay Area.
A Criterium is a closed bicycle race, generally less than 5K in length that leads to large groups of riders making tight turns and often seeing mishaps while doing so. These races are timed making them very interesting to watch. Downtown Burlingame offers just the right kind of site for this race and it’s really exciting to watch.
The races begin at 7 AM for the Elite 4 men, then on to the Elite 4 women at 7:50 AM. The last race concludes at 1:30 PM. The kids race is at 10:20 AM and lasts an hour. This is serious racing, folks. There are cash prizes for all except the children where they receive ribbons and there is no cost for their entry. It’s too late to enter in advance but you can register the morning of the race beginning at 6 AM, and up to 20 minutes prior to each race.
This race has been around for a long time and attracts a large number of people watching it. Parking is always difficult in downtown Burlingame, so you if plan on coming, check out the map below for ideas of where to park and be prepared to walk a few blocks. The race track will be closed to pedestrian crossing unless there is a race Marshall there to assist people when and where to cross. These cyclists are moving fast and we don’t want to see injuries take place because of careless people. Listen to the directions you are given by the Marshall working the track and follow them. You will have an exciting day of bicycle racing to see and it’s expected to be a picture perfect day for it, too.
Keep your parking south of Howard or north of Bellview and you should be fine. If you’re planning on coming down for breakfast and then watching, be sure to expect longer than usual lines at the many breakfast places downtown. The weather is anticipated to be warm so it should be perfect viewing weather for everyone.