For the very first time, the Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey
changes directions in 2012 and Istanbul, a city at the crossroads of civilizations, rich of its 2,500 years of history and still headed for a flowering future, will host on April 29 the final stage of the only race in the world which can justly claim to take place on two continents, Asia and Europe, on the same day.
“We are simply emulating the big Tours, usually ending in their emblematic city, said general director Abdurrahman Açikalin. Istanbul is the European capital of Turkey but it is also, in 2012, the capital of sport in Europe. »
After a transfer from Izmir on the Saturday evening after the seventh stage, the riders in the Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey will gather on Sunday morning on the European side of the Bosphorus for the last day of the race. After the start, they will ride across the monumental Bosphorus Bridge before reaching the final circuit, to be covered eight times.
In this eighth and final stage, organizers are highly expecting the presence of the President of the Republic of Turkey, Abdullah Gül. The « race of the two continents » will be a major date in the sporting year in Istanbul, after the athletics indoor world championships in March and before the international Euro-Asia marathon on November 11 as well as the short-course swimming world championships on December 12 to 16.
A similar stage held as a curtain-raiser last year was won by Italy’s hopeful Andrea Guardini, who impressed by beating Tyler Farrar and Kenny Van Hummel. It will be the final showdown between the fast men of the bunch, who should be many this year: Andre Greipel (Lotto- Belisol), Alessandro Petacchi (Lampre-ISD), Mathew Goss and Robbie McEwen (Greenedge), Mark Renshaw and Theo Bos (Rabobank), Denis Galymzianov (Katusha), Francesco Chicchi (Omega Pharma-Quick Step), Juan-Jose Haedo (Saxo Bank), Jimmy Casper (Ag2R-La Mondiale), Marcel Kittel (Argos-Shimano), Sasha Modolo (Colnago-GSF) et Valentin Iglinskyi (Astana).
It is a highly symbolic and significant victory that these men will pursue on April 29 in Istanbul.
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