NCL suspends 2024 season with hopes to return in 2025

The US-based crit league paused after one season, but announce intention to return in 2025

ClockUpdated 17:02, Monday 15th April 2024. Published 16:04, Monday 15th April 2024
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© NCL

The National Cycling League (NCL) has announced that their 2024 season is cancelled and all current rider and staff contracts have been terminated.

The NCL is a criterium series in the United States which launched in 2023 and sought to reconfigure criterium racing around a team-centric point-race structure.

“National Cycling League (NCL) announces it will pause operations for the 2024 season effective immediately as it looks to restructure and rebuild for the 2025 season,” a statement released on Monday said.

“While NCL will not field events or teams in 2024, the executive team and board of directors will focus on coming back stronger in 2025 by restructuring its business model within the current economic challenges facing the domestic and global cycling industry.”

Read more: The teams of the 2024 American professional peloton

The NCL planned to field three full mixed-gender teams – Miami Nights, Denver Disruptors, and Atlanta Rise – for the 2024 season in NCL and non-NCL events. The Miami Nights and the Denver Disruptors have already begun their race seasons, with both teams racing last week at the Redlands Bicycle Classic.

GCN understands that riders and staff were notified shortly before the cancellation announcement was made public via a company-wide conference call that lasted less than five minutes.

The NCL was a novel criterium concept that announced its intention to revolutionise cycling in the United States by creating spectator and television-friendly racing built around team success and sprint points. The league was bolstered by funding from a group of investors that included professional athletes from other professional American sports like the NBA and the NFL. Most notably, the NCL offered equal exposure and pay structures for both the men and women on the roster, a significant change for the American professional scene.

While the NCL billed its inaugural season as a success, financial trouble had been reported throughout the season. Ultimately, the season was cut short to three races rather than four and the venues were changed and relegated away from the city centres that were promoted in the pre-season plans. At the time, these changes were meant to strengthen the NCL’s economic standing for the 2024 season.

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