Corsica will host the opening stages of the 2013 Tour de France, the race’s organiser Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO) confirmed on Thursday.
The Mediterranean island will kick off the 100th edition of the Tour – the first time that Corsica has hosted the race in its history.
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Corsica’s involvement in the opening stages of the 2013 race came to light in December 2010 after Corsican Assembly documents were leaked to the press outlining the budget required to host the race.
Despite its omission from past editions of the Tour, it’s not the first time that Corsica has hosted top-level racing. Another ASO race, the two-day Criterium International, has been held on the island for the past two years. In November 2010, ASO announced that the Criterium International would be held on Corsica until 2013.
Next year’s Tour de France will start in Liege, Belgium, on Saturday June 30 with a 6.1km prologue time trial.