When local professional cyclists like Burke Swindlehurst, Jeff Louder and Reid Mumford line up for the start of Stage 4 during the Tour of Utah this August, they'll have 98 of the hardest miles in cycling ahead of them.

They'll also have 300 amateurs to chase down.

The Tour of Utah announced on Thursday will allow 300 cyclists — dubbing them "the 300 Warriors" — to sign up for the queen stage of the race and get a four-hour headstart on the pros as they try to tame the course and its 14,778 vertical feet before the pros catch them at the finish line at Snowbird on Aug. 16.

Though not a race, the ride will be anything but a casual, fun ride for the 300 cyclists who sign up.

"Finishing this ride," Terry McGinnis, veteran Utah bike racer, coach, and Tour of Utah executive director, said, "is the equivalent to riding the Tour de France's Col de la Croix de Fer, Col du Telegraphe, Col du Galibier and Alpe d'Huez."

Entrants are allowed in on a first-come, first-served basis and nearly half of the spots were filled by deadline Friday night.

Those who finish the epic ride will be receive a medallion and a cycling jersey signifying their accomplishment.

Information on the ride can be found at TourofUtah.com by clicking the 300 Warriors link.

— Jared Eborn