Cyclists battle in Old Pueblo Grand Prix

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TUCSON, Ariz. -- Sunday, dozens of cyclists made their way to the starting line of a criterium.  They battled it out on a downtown course for the Old Pueblo Grand Prix.

The sport can get pretty competitive and dangerous.

Kathy Eaton takes her passion to the pavement. She says the best part of racing is the competition.

"When you look back and see people suffering and you know that you're feeling good," said Eaton.

Cyclists went lap after lap, taking sharp corners at amazing speeds. The criterium lasts 25 minutes and in that time, a cyclist must loop the one kilometer track as many times as possible and position themselves for the final sprint.

"They're battling it out.  They're going round and round.  There can be some guy way out at front, but he may not end up being the winner.  I mean, there's so many things that can happen," said race promoter  Susan Frank.

They raced for bragging rights and cash prizes.

"You have to really pay attention on a course like this there's a lot of bumps and there's a lot of things going on so I'm just going to be looking in front of me," said racer Dick Dooley.

In the last few seconds of the race, two cyclists went down.

"We were taking out our final move to both cross the finish line and she crashed right after me," said racer Melissa Duhaine.

Duhaine suffered some scrapes and her partner needed medics to patch her up.

"I spin out, fell down on my side, and just lifted the bike over my body and slid into the ground," said Duhaine.

Both were able to walk away from the accident.  Melissa says she'll be ready for the next one.

There were nine races Sunday with various mini-races for prizes. The top prize was $20,000.