North America’s largest amateur cycling series is coming to the Chicago area in August after local city officials signed a multi-year deal to host GFNY Rockford along the Illinois-Wisconsin boarder.

“Rockford has so much to offer for our cyclists – the beautiful scenery on the course, the tranquil roads for their racing cycling, the tourism activities in Rockford and around the area, and the fantastic, beautiful nature thought out Winnebago County,” GFNY wrote in a press release.

Participants will race on a 93.6 miles long gran fondo course, starting and finishing in Rockford, on 7 August 2022 to try and qualify for the 2023 GFNY New York World Championships.

City of Rockford leaders expect the three-year deal signed with GFNY will generate $4.0 million of revenue at local businesses.  To achieve that goal the event must attract at least 750 participants and fill more than 1000 hotel room nights each year.

That’s a tall order and risky business, especially with a sky high $217 entry fee and other GFNY franchise events, like the now defunct GFNY Santa Fe, struggling to attract 200 riders after three years.

GFNY Rockford will be GFNY’s fifth 2022 USA event after Waco, Ann Arbor, Florida and New York.