The 2010 Bear Mountain Spring Classic returns on Sunday May 16. This year’s race is not on Mother’s Day, has a changed course and for the second year is a qualifying race for the Nature Valley Grand Prix Pro Ride.

For the first time in recent memory, the race will not be on Mother’s Day. Despite a record setting 700 riders last year, there were always complaints about the Mother’s Day conflict. Hopefully the date change serves riders and their mothers well.

A second change is the course. Because of structural damage to bridges on Tirorati Brook Road, the Palisades Parks Commission will not let the race go up Tiorati Brook Road. Instead the race will be on 20 mile loopback of the rest of the course. It might be even be more of a climber’s race as there is an uphill finish. The final climb up Lake Welch Drive is shorter but steeper than the Tiorati climb.

The race will start at Lake Welch and head towards Lake Sebago. From Lake Sebago the race goes up Seven Lakes Drive through Kanwaukee Circle up to Tiorati Circle. The race makes a complete turn around Tiroati Circle and heads back down Seven Lakes turning back onto Lake Welch Drive at the Sebago Turn-Around. The race follows Lake Welch Drive all the way past Lake Welch Beach and down the big downhill to the hair pin turn by the start of Tiorati Brook Road. The race then turns left back to Lake Welch Drive and a tough uphill back to the start/finish.

You can compare the elevation profiles of this year’s race vs. last year’s race.

Registration for the race will open April 9.

The first eligible finisher in the Men’s Pro 1 and Women’s Pro/1/2/3 races will win a spot on the Nature Valley Grand Prix Pro Ride Team in this June’s Nature Valley Grand Prix. Winners must be licensed by the USCF and must not have ridden for a UCI team in the last 3 years. The men’s winner must be a Cat 1 and the women’s winner either a Cat 1 or 2. If you think you have a shot but need to upgrade, do it before the race or you will not be eligible.