Tour of the Valley pedals into town

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The Tour of the Valley has pedaled back into town, with time trials at Mastropietro Winery in Berlin Center on Friday kicking off three days of cycling.

More than 300 cyclists from all across the country, including West Virginia, Pittsburgh, Florida, and even Canada, are participating in this year’s event. This is the fifth year for the Tour of the Valley and races will be held in Columbiana on Saturday  and in Youngstown on Sunday.

One of the cyclists taking part in the event is Lance Johnson of Buffalo.

“It’s a good race. I’ve been to this one before. It’s a good event,” Johnson said as he prepared to go through the 7-mile course for his time trial on Friday.

During the time trials, cyclists race against themselves and the clock.

“You come off that ramp, you hit it hard, you ride your heart out and you come back, cross that line, thinking that you’ve got absolutely nothing  left,” said Pam Semanik of Cleveland.

“Very exciting, nerve racking, coming off a ramp,” said Yvonne Lipinsky of Boardman.

“Every time we have this tour, it gets a little stronger with professionals. And all the amateurs in the area can take place,” said volunteer Mitch Lynch.

Unlike Johnson, Lipinsky is participating in the Tour of the Valley for the first time.

“Last year when they were here, it just  sounded so fun and I was excited for the opportunity to get to participate,” she said.

Some cyclists go solo for the event, while others boast proud team members.

“I’ve got 15 women on my race team. We’re the largest women’s race team in Northeast Ohio,” Semanik said.

The road race takes place Saturday in Columbiana. For more information on the Tour of the Valley, click here.

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