Tour de Suisse launches women’s race
Organizers of the Tour de Suisse are going forward with a women’s race for 2021, following a period of financial uncertainty for the race. The race will be comprised of two days of racing, and it will be held in conjunction with the opening weekend of the men’s WorldTour race.
The race will open with a hilly circuit on June 6 and then conclude with an individual time trial on June 7, which will be held alongside the opening ITT for the men’s race. Both stages will be held around Frauenfeld in northeastern Switzerland’
“We know full well that it should be a matter of course to have a national tour for women, given the social realities, and we are very happy to be able to hold the first edition,” said Patrick Hunger, co-president of the race. “We are looking forward to the Women’s Field in Frauenfeld.”
In a release the organization stated its intention to grow the two-day race into a longer format by securing funds that were originally designated for the 2020 UCI world road race championships in Martigny, which were eventually truncated and then relocated to Italy due to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a release, the race will invite UCI WorldTeams as well as top Swiss professional squads.
UCI reveals format for Track Champions League
The UCI on Tuesday revealed details for its new Track Champions League, the new track series for 2021 that will in part replace the old World Cup model. The Track Champions League is a partnership between the UCI and broadcaster Eurosport, and it is comprised of six international competitions held over six weeks starting in November 2021.
All of the competitions will be televised.
All six competitions will be comprised of four events — two events for endurance racers and two for sprint racers. Sprint competitors will compete in the Kieren and the Sprint race, while endurance riders will compete in a classic scratch race as well as an elimination event, where the last rider across the line in ever other lap will be eliminated.
The competition will be comprised of 18 male and 18 female sprinters, as well as 18 male and 18 endurance riders for a total of 72 riders. Each rider will accrue points in each race, and those points will count toward the final standings after six rounds.
After each of the six rounds, the UCI will award a leaders jersey to the male and female sprinters and endurance riders at the top of the points table. Prize money will be awarded after all six rounds, and the final standings will also carry prize cash. Earnings will be split evenly between male and female competitors.
The Track Champions League is intended to be contested by the very best riders in velodrome racing, and the qualification standards for the six week competition will be based on standings from the 2021 UCI track world championships as well as the Tokyo Olympic games.
“We have been tweaking the racing format over the last year, drawing on the expertise of the UCI and the invaluable insight of professional riders to design the very best competition,” said François Ribeiro, the head of Eurosport events in a release. “Our vision was to create an elite sporting event that portrays the spirit of track cycling in the most exciting way possible.”