The New York Metropolitan region’s premier cycling event, the fourth annual Campagnolo Gran Fondo New York (GFNY), is slated for May 18.It will cap an exciting weekend of events and racing taking place in New York and New Jersey. GFNY is also hosting the popular fourth annual NYC Bike Expo.Thousands of cyclists from more than 70 countries, including the United States, Italy, United Kingdom, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Russia, Jamaica, Israel and Poland, will gear up for the GFNY, a competitive cycling event based on the popular Italian racing style and the only one of its kind in the New York/New Jersey region.This year, Stephen Roche, winner of the triple crown of cycling (Tour de France, the Giro d’Italia and the World Championship in one year) and Nelson Vails (a New York City native and 1984 Olympic Silver Medalist in the Cycling Sprint) will ride in the GFNY.The challenging and scenic 100-mile race takes place the morning of May 18. Riders will begin on the New York City side of the iconic George Washington Bridge and wind through the course in New York and New Jersey that extends up to Bear Mountain State Park, with a new finish line at Ross Dock Picnic Area, the riverfront area in the Palisades Interstate Park in Fort Lee. Cyclists also have the option of partaking in the 50-mile GFNY BEAR on the same day, a non-competitive ride starting at the George Washington Bridge through Bear Mountain to celebrate the park’s 100th anniversary. The 2014 race course can be viewed at www.granfondony.com/course.The course highlight is the scenic and rigorous Bear Mountain, or Montagna dell’Orso. Riders will get a boost from cheering spectators in the Rockland County towns that the course travels through. At the GFNY Finish Area at Ross Dock, Roche will be available for photos and autographs, and he will also go on stage to award prizes during the race’s awards ceremony.The top three men and women will take home prizes, as well as top riders in specific categories, including male and female age groups and teams.In addition to the race, the fourth annual NYC Bike Expo will take place at the 69th Regiment Armory in Manhattan on 26th Street on May 16-17 from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Race sponsors, including Campagnolo, Lexus, PowerBar, Vespa, and Elite — along with other vendors in the food, wine and automotive sectors (among others) — will be on hand to showcase their latest products. The expo is a standalone event organized by GFNY that is open to the public and draws thousands of visitors.