GRAND SLAM CHAMPIONS SERENA AND VENUS WILLIAMS
AND 2017 US OPEN SEMIFINALIST COCO VANDEWEGHE
TO FACE THE NETHERLANDS IN THE FED CUP BY BNP PARIBAS
WORLD GROUP FIRST ROUND IN ASHEVILLE, N.C., FEB. 10-11
Fourth member of Team USA to be Announced Next Week
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., Jan. 23, 2018 – The USTA and United States Fed Cup Captain Kathy Rinaldi today announced that former world No. 1 and 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams, fellow former world No. 1 and seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams, and 2017 US Open and Australian Open semifinalist and world No. 9 CoCo Vandeweghe will represent the U.S. in the 2018 Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group First Round against the Netherlands.
The best-of-five match series will be played at the U.S. Cellular Center in Asheville, N.C., Feb. 10-11, on an indoor hard court. This is the first time that Asheville is hosting Fed Cup. The U.S. team comes to the city after winning its record 18th Fed Cup title in November against Belarus, 3-2, in Minsk. This was the U.S.’s first Fed Cup title since 2000.
Captain Rinaldi will announce the final member of the four-player roster next week. The Netherlands team will also be announced next week.
Play begins on both Saturday, Feb. 10, and Sunday, Feb. 11, at 12:30 p.m. ET. On Saturday, two singles matches will take place. On Sunday, play will continue with two reverse singles matches and the doubles match. A revised schedule for Sunday may take place if a team clinches in the third or fourth match. Tennis Channel will present live daily coverage.
Limited tickets are still available and may be purchased by visiting www.usta.com/fedcup or by calling 888-334-USTA (8782). Both single-day and two-day ticket packages are available. Two-day ticket packages for both Saturday and Sunday range from $50 to $190 ($25 to $95 per day), representing the greatest initial ticket value. Single-day tickets for Saturday or Sunday play are available from $30 to $100 per day.
While tickets are going fast, numerous community events will take place over Fed Cup week to celebrate the team coming to Asheville, which will be announced at a later date.
The U.S. Fed Cup team has played in North Carolina on three prior occasions, holding a 2-1 record in the state. The U.S. competed last in North Carolina in 2002, in Charlotte at the Olde Providence Racquet Club. The team also played in Raleigh in 1999 at the Raleigh Racquet Club, as well as in Wilmington in 1995 at Trask Coliseum.
The U.S. holds a 6-2 head-to-head record over the Netherlands in Fed Cup play. The U.S. last faced the Netherlands in the 1998 World Group First Round in Kiawah Island, S.C., sweeping the tie, 5-0. The Americans’ only losses to the Dutch came in 1968 and 1997.
World No. 5 Venus Williams, 37, continues to be at the top of her game, reaching the final of Wimbledon and the Australian Open in 2017 with a semifinal showing at the US Open. Last year, Williams had the 13th Top 10 season of her career and finished 2017 in the Top 5 for the first time since 2010. In 2013, Williams re-entered the Top 20 for the first time since revealing that she had been diagnosed with Sjogren’s Syndrome, an autoimmune disorder. Williams is a seven-time Grand Slam singles champion and has won 49 career WTA singles titles. She has been ranked No. 1 in both singles and doubles. Williams holds a 23-4 overall record in Fed Cup competition, including a 19-2 record in singles, and was a member of the title-winning team in 1999. She is competing in her first Fed Cup tie since February 2016. In Olympic play, Williams has won three gold medals in doubles (with Serena) in 2000, 2008 and 2012, and she captured the singles gold medal in 2000. Follow @venuswilliams on Instagram and @Venuseswilliams on Twitter.
Vandeweghe, 26, of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., is ranked a career-high No. 9 in the world. Vandeweghe made Fed Cup history last year by going 8-0 in singles and doubles play to lead the U.S. team to its 18th Fed Cup championship. With six singles wins in 2017, Vandeweghe became the first American ever, since the World Group format was instituted in 1995, to win all six Fed Cup singles matches in one year. She was also the first player to win eight rubbers (six singles, two doubles) in a Fed Cup year since 1995 and only the third player in Fed Cup history to win three rubbers in a Fed Cup Final (two singles and one doubles). Vandeweghe has played in seven Fed Cup ties, holding a 7-3 singles record and a 5-0 doubles record. She reached the semifinals of both the 2017 US Open and Australian Open—her career-best Grand Slam results—and broke into the Top 10 for the first time in November. Vandeweghe also advanced to the quarterfinals of Wimbledon in 2015. She holds two WTA singles titles, both won in the Netherlands, in 2014 and 2016, as well as two doubles titles (Indian Wells in 2016 with Mattek-Sands, Stanford in 2017 with Abigail Spears). She competed in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio in women’s doubles and advanced to the doubles semifinals at the 2015 and 2016 US Open. As a junior player, Vandeweghe won the 2008 US Open girls’ singles title. Her mother, Tauna, was a member of the U.S. national team in both swimming and volleyball, and her uncle is former NBA star Kiki Vandeweghe. Follow @cocovandey on Instagram and @CoCoVandey on Twitter.
World No. 22 Serena Williams, 36, is competing in her first event since the 2017 Australian Open and since giving birth to her daughter Alexis Olympia in September. Williams won her 23rd Grand Slam title at her last Australian Open while pregnant and now holds the record for the most Grand Slam singles titles in the Open Era. Williams has won 72 WTA singles titles and has finished a season ranked No. 1 five times in her career, the last coming in 2015. She has also been ranked No. 1 in doubles in her career, holding 23 doubles titles with Venus, including 14 Grand Slam women’s doubles titles. In 2012, Williams captured the Olympic gold medal in singles and women’s doubles with Venus in London. With the Olympic singles win, Williams joined Steffi Graf as the only women to complete the career Golden Slam—the Olympics and the four Grand Slam events—and she is the only person to accomplish the feat in both singles and doubles. Williams holds a 13-0 singles record and 3-1 doubles record in Fed Cup competition, last playing in the 2015 Fed Cup World Group II First Round against Argentina in Buenos Aires. She also helped the U.S. capture the 1999 Fed Cup title. Follow @serenawilliams on Instagram and @serenawilliams on Twitter.
Fed Cup is the world’s largest annual international team competition in women’s sport, with approximately 100 nations taking part each year. The U.S. holds an overall 149-36 record in Fed Cup competition with a 40-6 record in home ties. For more information, including access to player and historical Fed Cup records, please go to www.usta.com/fedcup or www.fedcup.com.
Keep up with Team USA using hashtag #TeamUSATennis on Facebook (@USTA), on Twitter (@USTA), and on Instagram (@USTA). Wilson is the official ball of the U.S. Fed Cup team. Deloitte is the official team sponsor of the U.S. Fed Cup Team.
The USTA is the national governing body for the sport of tennis in the U.S. and the leader in promoting and developing the growth of tennis at every level -- from local communities to the highest level of the professional game. A not-for-profit organization with more than 715,000 members, it invests 100% of its proceeds in growing the game. It owns and operates the US Open, one of the highest-attended annual sporting events in the world, and launched the US Open Series, linking seven summer WTA and ATP World Tour tournaments to the US Open. In addition, it owns approximately 90 Pro Circuit events throughout the U.S. and selects the teams for the Davis Cup, Fed Cup, Olympic and Paralympic Games. The USTA’s philanthropic entity, the USTA Foundation, provides grants and scholarships in addition to supporting tennis and education programs nationwide to benefit under-resourced youth through the National Junior Tennis & Learning (NJTL) network. For more information about the USTA, go to USTA.com or follow the official accounts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat.
For more information, contact: Amanda Korba, Senior Coordinator, Corporate Communications, (914) 697-2219, email@example.com
Contact: Demp Bradford
Asheville Buncombe Regional Sports Commission
President and CEO
Explore Asheville Convention & Visitors Bureau
ASHEVILLE LANDS THREE-YEAR CONTRACT TO HOST MAJOR INTERNATIONAL CYCLING EVENT
ASHEVILLE, NC (October 5, 2017) – Asheville will play host to the prestigious, international cycling event, Haute Route, this spring, thanks to a collaborative effort between the Asheville Buncombe Regional Sports Commission and Explore Asheville Convention & Visitors Bureau to land the event. Additional assistance in securing the three-year commitment came from the City of Asheville and Buncombe County Recreation Services. More than 300 riders from across the United States and Europe are expected to participate, resulting in more than $1 million in total economic impact.
Asheville will be the first of three domestic locations to host a shorter, three-day format of the global cycling series. Scheduled May 18-20, 2018, the event will begin and end each day in downtown Asheville, allowing cyclists and their families to explore. The first Haute Route held in North America was in Colorado in June 2017. The seven-day, point-to-point event was won by Brevard resident and renowned cyclist Matthew Busche.
“Asheville has a long history of hosting cycling events, and we are excited to bring the Haute Route experience to the region,” said Demp Bradford, executive director of the Asheville Buncombe Regional Sports Commission. “Haute Route Asheville will have the flair of the European cycling experience with good southern hospitality.”
Asheville hosted Tour DuPont in 1994 and 1995 – Lance Armstrong won the race into Asheville in 1995 – as well as the 2015 and 2016 USA Cycling Collegiate Road National Championships, the 2016 USA Cycling Cyclocross National Championships and Cycle North Carolina.
“Hosting the first Haute Route on the East Coast will continue to build on our reputation as a world-class competitive biking destination,” said Stephanie Brown, president and CEO of Explore Asheville.
-- MORE --
“Haute Route has a history of attracting riders from across the U.S. as well as internationally, with many of the riders coming early and staying late to acclimate and to enjoy the area surroundings. While they are here, we know the participants will experience the best the area has to offer and will help share our story when they return home.”
During a recent site visit, organizers for Haute Route conducted a test ride on the Blue Ridge Parkway that included 18 local cyclists. In addition to its natural landscape, Asheville was deemed attractive because of the number of professional cyclists who have moved to the area to train.
The event will include timed segments strategically placed throughout the routes. Participants will navigate roughly 100 miles each day and will conclude with individual time trials on Sunday morning. The winner will post the best times over all three days and segments.
The rides will encompass the scenic views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, with the exact route to be announced early next year. Registration and the pre-race briefing will be on Thursday, May 17.
Buncombe County welcomes 3.8 million overnight guests, providing a customer base that assists in the sustainability of businesses in the community and contributes to tax revenues. Annually, tourism generates a $2.9 billion economic impact to the region.
# # #
About the Asheville Buncombe Regional Sports Commission
The mission of the Asheville Buncombe Regional Sports Commission is to identify and attract sports events and related meetings to enhance the health, wellness and quality of life for area residents and sports enthusiasts and to generate a positive economic impact by promoting the region as a recognized sporting destination.
About Explore Asheville Convention & Visitors Bureau
Explore Asheville works under the oversight of the Buncombe County Tourism Development Authority to execute an extensive strategic marketing and sales program that inspires visitation and group meetings and travel while showcasing more than 1,200 business. Visitors annually spend $1.9 billion in Buncombe County, yielding an economic impact of nearly $3 billion. Explore Asheville also provides support on the Tourism Product Development Fund and connects partners to free marketing opportunities that appeal to visitors.
HAUTE ROUTE CYCLING SERIES EXPANDS TO 11 EVENTS IN 2018
WITH THREE NEW U.S. EDITIONS
San Francisco CA, Cedar City, UT and Asheville, NC to host new 3-day events
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (October 12, 2017) -- Following the final event of the 2017 Haute Route Cycling Series around Mont Ventoux last weekend, Switzerland-based OC Sport announced a full calendar of 11 events for the 2018 season, including three new events in the U.S. The company’s commitment to the U.S. market reaffirms Haute Route’s position as the preeminent global multi-day event series for amateur athletes. Staying true to the hallmarks of every Haute Route, each U.S. event provides amateur riders with the authentic pro experience on and off the bike. Athletes experience the best roads in the country and are fully supported with premium services typically reserved for the pro peloton.
The 2018 season will open with the inaugural three-day Haute Route San Francisco (April 20-22), a three-day event that will give riders the opportunity to experience the Bay Area’s fierce local cycling culture, breath-taking views and appreciate iconic landmarks, including the Golden Gate Bridge. The season will continue in the Appalachian Mountains in North Carolina with the three-day Haute Route Asheville in May (May 18-20). There, the peloton will be immersed in the region’s unmistakeable mountain vibe and awe-inspiring scenery of the Blue Ridge Mountains and Mount Mitchell, the highest peak east of the Mississippi.
The final new three-day event on North-American soil next year will be the Haute Route Utah (September 14-16), which will be held in Cedar City in September. Combining stunning red rock scenery and charming back roads over coveted high plateaus and summits, Utah promises three remarkable days of cycling.
The new three-day events build on Haute Route’s first seven-day U.S. event launched in 2017, the Mavic Haute Route Rockies. This event returns for a second edition in Colorado from June 23-29, 2018 and will once again feature the iconic hard packed dirt roads, high altitude passes and beautiful panoramas that make Colorado the heartland of American cycling.
Additional new global events include the Maserati Haute Route Norway and a revamped three-day Haute Route Dolomites and Haute Route Stelvio.
FULL CALENDAR 2018
SAN FRANCISCO April 20th to 22nd
ASHEVILLE May 18th to 20th
STELVIO June 8th to 10th
MAVIC ROCKIES June 23rd to 29th
ALPE D’HUEZ July 13th to 15th
MASERATI NORWAY August 3rd to 5th
PYRENEES August 18th to 24th
ALPS August 26th to September 1st
DOLOMITES, 3 days in September
UTAH September 14th to 16th
VENTOUX October 5th to 7th
Both of Haute Route’s flagship events in the Alps and Pyrenees will see rejuvenated courses next year. The Alps, from August 26 to September 1 returns to its North to South route, departing from Megève to reach Nice with a host of world-renowned Alpine cols in-between. The Pyrenees, from August 18-24, will both start and finish in Pau, while also visiting a number of host towns throughout the week, allowing riders to discover the raw beauty of this mountain range. These seven-stage long, timed and ranked events are the pinnacle of the 2018 Haute Route calendar, and will allow hundreds of amateur riders from across the globe to fulfill their cycling dreams in iconic mountain ranges.
Returning for a second edition in 2018, the three-day events in Alpe d’Huez, from July 13-15, and Ventoux from October 5-7, will once again showcase two of the most storied climbs in the history of cycling. The much-awaited Maserati Haute Route Norway will take place from August 3-5. Riders will experience an extraordinary setting for cycling in the Stavanger region. Snaking through the Norwegian fjords and drinking in the deep-rooted cycling culture, riders will undoubtedly be captivated by the Haute Route’s first Scandinavian adventure.
In order to visit the most legendary climbs in Italian cycling, the Haute Route Dolomites will take on a new format in 2018, splitting into two separate three-day events. Taking place in September, the three-day Haute Route Dolomites will trace a sensational route through the highly recognizable jagged rock faces and demanding climbs of the region. In addition to this, the new three-day Haute Route, Stelvio will be hosted in Bormio from June 8-10. As one of the most recognizable and respected climbs in cycling, the Stelvio has been much in demand by the Haute Route peloton and Bormio provides the perfect location for the new three-day Haute Route event.
Brand new in 2018, riders have the option to either ride the Haute Route as a solo rider or as a duo (team of two cyclists). Riders registering as a Duo will not be included in the individual standings; Duo rankings will be established based on the time of the second member of each Duo team to cross the finish line every day.
Registrations are currently open to the general public for the Mavic Haute Route Rockies and Haute Route Alpe d’Huez.
Alumni riders currently have access to an exclusive 7-day registration phase for the Haute Route Alps, Pyrenees, Ventoux, Maserati Norway, San Francisco, Asheville, Utah, and Stelvio. Registration to all these events will open to the general public on Thursday 19 October.
All riders can also pre-register for the 3-day Haute Route Dolomites.
All details are on www.hauteroute.org
U.S. Media Contact:
Katrina Younce: 310-995-3619 / firstname.lastname@example.org