DENVER (CBS4) – The 2019 Colorado Classic will be a women’s only stage cycling race. Race officials made the announcement on Tuesday morning.

(credit: CBS)

Ken Gart, chairman of RPM Events Group, called it “game-changing news.” He said next year’s race will be notable for being the only stage race just for women on the continent.

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“Today I am proud to announce that the Colorado Classic is going to become a women’s stand-alone race and one of the only premier women’s stage races in the Western Hemisphere,” Gart said.

Gov.-elect Jared Polis said the decision to drop the men’s portion of the race is a bold one.

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“It puts women’s cycling and Colorado on a world stage,” he said. “All eyes will be watching us in the sport.”

In previous years the Colorado Classic has featured a women’s race in addition to men’s stages.

The race will take place on Aug. 23-25 and it will be streamed live for free online.

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Female cyclist Mari Holden reacted to the news on Facebook with excitement, saying: “This is an amazing commitment to women’s cycling. I also feel the loss of the men’s race as I have always loved ALL racing in Colorado, but I am more than excited that we will now have a Women specific international race in Colorado to showcase our talent and inspire future generations. It was something that I always imagined while I was living and training in Colorado Springs and it is incredible to see it happening now.”