OGDEN -- Seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong is considering competing in the Xterra USA Championship on Sept. 24 at Snowbasin Ski Resort.
In a surprise visit, Armstrong spent three hours at Snowbasin on Wednesday, scouting the course for the event.
Armstrong biked along an 18-mile course from Pineview Reservoir to Snowbasin and then completed a six-mile trail run to help decide whether he will participate in the championship, said Mike Caldwell, founder and past president of the Ogden-based GOAL Foundation.
The foundation is a sponsor for Xterra USA Championship, which consists of triathlon races that include swimming, mountain biking and trail running.
Caldwell, who is also a candidate for Ogden mayor, said Armstrong's visit was not tied to his campaign and was arranged by TEAM Unlimited LLC, a Honolulu-based corporation that created Xterra.
"If people think I have the pull to get him (Armstrong) here for a mayoral bid, that's absolutely hilarious," Caldwell said Thursday. "There is no way he would lend his name to that."
In addition to Caldwell, others who joined Armstrong on the Xterra USA Championship course included professional triathlete Jimmy Riccitello and Steve Andrus, director of events at Snowbasin.
Caldwell said it was a thrill to ride and run with Armstrong. "I was honored to participate."
Caldwell said he was notified Monday by TEAM Unlimited officials that a famous, but unidentified, individual would be at Snowbasin on Wednesday to check out the Xterra course.
Armstrong's plane touched down at Ogden-Hinckley Airport about 11:30 a.m. and departed around 4 p.m. Wednesday en route to Calgary, Canada, Caldwell said.
Armstrong was spotted by several people as he biked at Snowbasin, but no one bothered him, Caldwell said.
"He was impressed with how beautiful and pleasant the course was."
It would be a major boost to have Armstrong participate in the upcoming Xterra USA Championship, Caldwell said.
"If he participated, Ogden would be the first major venue to welcome Lance since his recent retirement." he said. "He hasn't made a decision, but we would love to host him."