Subscribers to the “more is better” philosophy will appreciate having not one, but two, Tours of China on the UCI AsiaTour calendar this year. Following two years of a relatively compact schedule, the race has now been split into two, with an aggregate distance just shy of 1,050 kilometres.
UCI-owned event creator/promoter Global Cycling Promotions copped flak on many aspects of its inaugural Tour of Beijing, including a dearth of spectators, pollution, location and even the very fact that it existed. Well, the race is here to stay until at least 2014, so GCP has focused on a more exciting route for the Chinese … Continue reading
Billed as the “highest race in Asia”, the cloud-scraping Tour of Qinghai Lake is also the longest on the 2012 UCI AsiaTour calendar. At 1,867 kilometers over 13 stages, China’s first Hors Categorie stage race will punish the lungs and legs of all riders, including those from the seven ProContinental teams making the journey to central … Continue reading
Billed by Indonesia’s Ministry of Tourism as a “strategic combination of bicycle sport event and tourism promotion”, the 4th Tour de Singkarak is a well-budgeted joint venture between state and national government and the Indonesian Cycling Federation. 25 teams will cover 854 kilometres over seven days, on a parcours that is anything but sprinter-friendly.
Following visits to Oman, Qatar, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand, Philippines, Korea and Iran, the 2012 UCI AsiaTour finally lands in Japan; one of Asia’s true cycling culture centers. Having missed 2011 due to Japan’s natural disasters, Tour of Japan is back for its 15th edition.
In 2010, the Tour of Chongming Island stage race doubled up with the fifth round of the UCI Women’s World Cup, also held in Chongming. The formula worked well, and the “partner race” concept is now in its third successive year. 2012 sees the World Cup race start in Shanghai’s Pudong New Area for the … Continue reading
With its Soviet past, huge mountains, proximity to Europe and powerful cycling nation of Iran just over the border, Azerbaijan would be an interesting place for a bike race – if not for the fact the Tour of Azerbaijan is actually held in Iran. Cycling iQ takes a brief look at what it’s all about … Continue reading
Is there a better host country for a bicycle race in Asia than Malaysia? Climate, terrain, food, cycling culture, organizational nous – all the boxes are ticked. The nation has already hosted three major professional cycling events this year, including the 2012 Asian Cycling Championships, with more UCI-accredited races reportedly on the way for 2013.
It has been such an exciting month for pro cycling enthusiasts in Asia. The 2012 Tour de Korea is the third of four UCI2.2 stage races so far in April and, if initial presentation and prize money is an indicator, it may later prove to be the leader in terms of quality.
The Philippines’ only UCI-sanctioned professional road cycling event starts this Saturday. Starting from the north of the archipelago’s largest island, Luzon, the four-stage UCI2.2 ranked mini-tour will guide 12 foreign teams and 5 local teams over 502 kilometers through to a Queen stage that one local newspaper described as “perilous”.