1st Annual Kids' Crit was a Hit!

The first annual Kids' Crit was a success this past Labor Day 2015. Watch the VIDEO!! After years of hoping to include a kids' event in the Criterium stage of the Green Mountain Stage Race, the organizers of the Burlington Criterium were pleased to host the Kids' Crit, launched by the Richard Tom Foundation. This first year started small, yet backed by Richard’s ever present inspiration, RTF got it off the ground with a great start. Twenty-eight kids showed up at registration to ride the City Hall circuit on the same tracks as all the amateur and pro racers. To fend off the 95 degree heat, kids, parents and volunteers gathered in the shade of the RTF tents, with ice water and supersoakers in full force by the “RTF kids”, keeping everyone cool. We were all inspired by the strong community support that our friends and volunteers rallied by making rounds among the crowds selling raffle tickets and spreading awareness about the Foundation. Matt Lyon and volunteer Chris Morrissey were staged in the “pit” and ready for last minute repairs. As kids stepped up to the registration table, they were excited to pin on their official “Green Mountain Stage Race” number and receive a schwag bag containing Zbars, stickers, water bottles and thunder sticks thanks to the generosity of Skirack, VBT and Dealer.com.

Both kids’ groups (ages 7-8 and 9-10) started with an “And they’re OFF!!” and spun around the block on the tails of their pro rider escorts. What a thrill for these young riders to experience the encouraging shouts from cheering fans and parents and the official race announcers urging them on as they powered their bikes right through the finish line. Kids were stoked! As it was a ‘fun ride’ and not a race, all riders received a medal, presented by Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger. The event ended with a silent auction for a kid’s performance road bike, and a raffle including a variety of prizes from bike shorts, bike pump, T-shirts, to gift certificates and more.

RTF plans to turn the Kids’ Crit into an annual event, in conjunction with the Burlington Criterium, and in continuation of the RTF mission to inspire and motivate kids to discover the joy and adventure of riding a bike - just as Richard always did.