Expect major traffic delays Saturday as UA football fans try to get to campus while riders in El Tour de Tucson encircle the city.
Bikers riding in the 107-mile race are expected to cause intermittent delays along Mission and Drexel roads shortly after the race begins at 7 a.m., with the pack beginning to thin out as the course winds along Nogales Highway and Hughes Access Road.
Shorter “fun rides” are scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. at Armory Park, leading to more traffic delays in downtown Tucson.
An 81-mile race, scheduled to start at 9 a.m., will tie up portions of Irvington Road near the east campus of Pima Community College.
As Armory Park is the finish line for all races, drivers should expect more delays as hundreds of bikers begin to pour back into downtown along the frontage and along 22nd Street shortly before noon.
While there’s no sure way for fans outside the race route to get to the University of Arizona campus hassle-free, here are some tips that might make the drive easier:
The biggest cluster of riders is expected to hit the frontage road just west of Interstate 10 at Ina Road about 10:40 a.m. Expect long delays as hundreds of riders pass through the intersection.
Those traveling south on Interstate 10 should be advised the Broadway and 22nd Street exits will be closed as part of the race.
A 38-mile event will begin at noon along Innovation Park Drive, leading to delays along Moore and Tangerine Roads in the afternoon as cyclists cross intersections.
The start of a 57-mile ride at Swan and Fort Lowell roads at 10:30 a.m. will lead to some traffic backing up along Skyline Drive and Ina Road, with riders following Oracle Road into Oro Valley.
Drivers should expect minor delays before noon as cyclists race along the eastern edge of the course.
The race starts Saturday morning at Armory Park on Sixth Avenue at 13th Street, with lane restrictions along 22nd Street beginning at 6 a.m.