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UCI to host road championships for Afghan women next month in Switzerland

The Afghan women racers will complete two laps of a 28.5km circuit near the UCI headquarters.

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Afghan women racers who were evacuated last year in the aftermath of the Taliban takeover will be racing next month for the 2022 Afghanistan Women’s National Championships.

The UCI confirmed the date set for October 23 near the UCI’s headquarters in Aigle, Switzerland.

“The organization of the 2022 Women’s Road Championships of Afghanistan is part of the continuing efforts of the UCI and its partners to support and assist the Afghan Cycling Federation,” UCI officials said.

Also read: How Sylvan Adams helped evacuate Afghan cyclists

The Afghan women cyclists will complete two laps of a 28.5km circuit with a 72m difference in altitude (total: 57 km with 144 m altitude difference).  The peloton will ride through the towns of Aigle, Yvorne, Rennaz and Vouvry, in the Chablais region of Vaud and Valais.

The race will start at the UCI World Cycling Centre (WCC) — the UCI’s education and training center located in Aigle — and finish at the same location.

Last summer saw the Taliban return to power across Afghanistan and reimpose its extreme government after a 20-year absence.

In the aftermath, the UCI and others, including Israel Premier Tech owner Sylvan Adams, helped several Afghan women cyclists and their families flee the country.

Some of the women cyclists received Swiss visas, and many of them partake in the event next month.