ALBANY, Ga. — Changes are coming to one of downtown Albany's signature events, as the "roll" in Rock, Roll and Run weekend pulls out to become a standalone event.
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Officials with the Albany Convention and Visitors Bureau, SB&T Bank and the Pecan City Peddlers announced Wednesday that this year's SB&T Bike Race will join the Southeast Regional Bike Series — a five-state bike racing series — by kicking off the 2013 SRS season May 25-26.
"Moving the SB&T Bike Race provides us an opportunity to grow the race and have it become a standalone event," Rashelle Beasley, the Albany CVB manager, said during a news conference Wednesday. "We are excited to be the kickoff location and only site in Georgia for the inaugural year of the Southeast Regional Series."
Beasley said that between 350 and 500 riders are expected to come to Albany during the event.
Mark Lane, president and CEO of SB&T, said his organization was excited about the coming changes to the event.
"SB&T Bank is proud to continue our sponsorship of bike race weekend," Lane said. "We're especially excited about the new opportunities presented by becoming a part of the SRS Race Series. Hosting a premier event such as this will boost tourism in Albany, which will resonate positively throughout our community."
The bike race has been an integral part of the weekend that includes the Snickers Energy Bar Marathon and the Mardi Gras street festival. This year's marathon and street festival will be held March 2.
Chris Battle, vice president of the Pecan City Peddlers, said his group is excited to host a race that will be a part of a much larger event.
"It's always been a great event and something we look forward to every year," Battle said. "But with the changes this year, we are confident that it's going to make it an even bigger and better event."