After successfully postponing the Johnson City Omnium from the first weekend in June 2020 to mid August 2020, due to COVID-19, the races are back to their regular date of the weekend after Memorial Day, June 5-6, 2021. With the title sponsorship of the Elizabethton Chamber of Commerce, the Omnium is now known as the Carter County Omnium. The road race, Carter County Roan Groan, goes from Cat Island Park to Carvers Gap, covering the same courses of its previous 16 years. The time trial, Temple Hill Time Trial, will be on the same course of the previous 10 years. The time trial runs from the new Erwin Ballad Health Hospital on Temple Hill Road for 3.2 miles. The criterium, Ballad Health Criterium, will be on the downtown Elizabethton course used the first time in 2020.
Early registration statistics show racers from 15 states signed up so far. “It looks like we will have 200+ racers again this year,” says Reneau Dubberley the race director. There are returning winners from last year as well as riders taking on this very challenging competition for the first time. All five levels of amateurs and professional racers have separate competitions. The difficulty of the courses, along with the level of competition. has historically advanced the winners to a higher level of competition. A 2008 winner of the Omnium competed in the Tour de France in 2009. Last year’s category 3 winner, Wienke Brooks, an 18 year old from Greenville, SC, has moved up to race against the pros this year as a category 2. A local racer, Noah Naseri from Limestone, TN, won all three races and the Omnium as a category 5 last year and is competing as a category 4 this year. Other local racers in 2020 included the Milligan Cycling team, with three women in the top six Women’s Pro/Amateur competition.