In the wake of its overhaul after much of its staff left to start their own statewide bike ride, RAGBRAI has hired a new director.

Dieter Drake comes to Iowa from Colorado Springs to manage the event, scheduled to take place this year between July 19-25, the week following its new alternative, Iowa's Ride, July 12-18. He has no experience with RAGBRAI but does with similar rides around the country. "It's exactly my speed", says Drake. "It’s small towns. It’s bicycles. It’s beers. It’s exactly the kind of crowd I want to be around in cycling."

He has organized or managed over 100 bicycle rides and races in the past 15 years.

He also runs his own company, Anthem Sports Tours, and as an offshoot, they too have their own organized ride, which he will spearhead for the final time on December 16th before moving to Iowa.

A former RAGBRAI staffer will also join him as the new logistics consultant. Wes Hall served as RAGBRAI assistant director from 2007-13.

[Via CBS2]