World Champs change format in 2012

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The UCI has announced that the World Championships 2012 will be held in the Limburg region, Holland, in a new week-long format that will introduce a team time trial event, last part of a World's back in 1993, and re-incorporate the junior races for the first time since 2001.

The new format, running from September 15 to 23 over two weekends, also includes a cyclo-tourist ride in the Limburg region.

Various towns will be used in to the host the the World's in Holland's hilliest region, including Valkenberg where the World's were last held  in the Netherlands back in 1998.

After an opening ceremony on the Saturday, the racing opens up with the women's and mens' team time trial on the Sunday.

This is followed by the usual run of individual time trials: the junior women's TT and U-23 men's TT is on the Monday and the junior men's and senior women's TT on the Tuesday. The elite men's time trial is brought forward a day, to the Wednesday.

The same pattern is used for the road-race from the Friday through to the Sunday, culminating in the elite men's event on the last day.

The new format will produce clashes with the Vuelta on the opening weekend, assuming the Tour of Spain remains in September. Could this change of dates be an indication that the Vuelta is moving back to its old April slot?  

Whatever the case, there will be another two World Championships - in Australia in 2010 and Denmark in 2011 - before the changes come into force.

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