Abu Dhabi Tour added to 2015 race calendar

Giro d'Italia organiser RCS Sport announces its second Middle East stage race, the Abu Dhabi Tour

The inaugural Abu Dhabi Tour will take place in the Middle East next October, extending the professional season past the Tour of Lombardy. Organisers of the Giro d’Italia, RCS Sport, will run the four-day stage race just four days after Il Lombardia, it’s own end of season one-day classic.

“We are proud to host and organise the Abu Dhabi Tour, which will show to the entire world the most prominent landmarks of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and will bring additional value to the world of cycle racing,” Aref Hamad Al Awani, General Secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council explained.

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“This event is in line with the overall goal of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council to develop sport through events that reach the entire community, from the young to families, as cycling does.”

The stage race is a partnership between the Abu Dhabi Sports Council and RCS Sport.

Lorenzo Giorgetti, RCS Sport Sales Director explained, “This important goal is in line with RCS Sport’s strategy focused on extending its activities towards new international markets.”

The Giro d’Italia organiser, RCS Sport already runs the Dubai Tour in February. American Taylor Phinney (BMC Racing) won the first edition this year. The four-day event will take place February 2 to 7 in 2015 and include a summit finish for the first time.

The four-day Abu Dhabi Tour will set off in the neighbouring emirate down the UAE motorway. For 2015, it carries 2.1 UCI status on the Asia Tour calendar.

“The inaugural race route will take place in the spectacular scenery of the UAE’s largest emirate,” read a press release, “with many of the top world cycling teams, and their leading riders.”

RCS Sport explained that it will announce the route details in June 2015.

Tour de France winner Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) helped RCS Sport launch the 2015 Dubai Tour and said that he plans to race there again as he builds toward his season goals.

The Abu Dhabi Tour, however, could attract stars at the tail end of the year who are on their way back from injury or who simply have energy left to burn. It fills a mid-October slot that the Tour of Beijing left open when it pulled out this year following four editions