Harbin Park grows up: BioWheels Workshop started its promotion of cyclocross racing in the greater Cincinnati area in 1995. BioWheels’ founder Matt Johnson organized a series of small, grassroots events at a handful of venues, one of which was Harbin Park in Fairfield. Back in the day, we had no idea what kind of venue we had stumbled upon. Harbin has a plethora of room and terrain to run countless different cyclocross courses, with the earlier ones featuring long stretches of open grassy double track, and short sections of the mountain bike trail. As the “UCI” course designs became more the standard as we came into the 21st century, today’s courses at Harbin feature more back and forth in a concentrated area, with lots of constant undulation and off-camber and sand features. In the words of world-class bicycle race announcer Dave Towle, Harbin Park is a “National Championships-worthy” venue.
BioWheels now puts on one cyclocross event at Harbin Park per year, and for the last 5 years it has been a “Category 1″ ranked event by the UCI (governing body of international bike racing). Category 1 races are ranked one below World Cups, and there are only 8 “C1′s” in the United States. This year the race at Harbin Park will be a C2, giving its C1 to the Lionheart International.
The Harbin Park Cyclocross Race in Cincinnati, OH was estimated to bring $200,000 to the community in 2010. 70% of participants traveled in from over 100 miles to compete, and more than 80% stayed two nights or more in the region.
Liberles, J., 2010