The 79th edition of Poland’s most prestigious cycling race, Tour de Pologne, started on Saturday at 11:35 CEST in Kielce. The race was awarded the highest UCI category in 2005. For the past 17 years, all elite groups have competed in the race on a mandatory basis, gradually becoming a race of rising cycling stars.
During the first stage of the competition, the riders will have to cover a distance of 218.8 km from Kielce, southern Poland to Lublin, eastern Poland.
This year’s event stars 23 teams with 153 athletes from all over the world. Some of the better-known names racing in the event include Tokyo Olympics gold medalist Richard Carapaz, multiple Madison world champion Mark Cavendish, winner of eight Grand Tour stages Sam Bennett and others.
Route of the 79th Tour de Pologne:
Stage 1 | KIELCE-LUBLIN | 218.8 km
Stage 2 | CHEŁM-ZAMOŚĆ | 205.6 km
Stage 3 | KRAŚNIK-PRZEMYŚL | 237.9 km
Stage 4 | LESKO-SANOK | 179.4 km
Stage 5 | ŁAŃCUT-RZESZÓW | 178.1 km
Stage 6 | SZAFLARY-STACJA NARCIARSKA RUSIŃSKI | 11.8 km
Stage 7 | VALSIR, SKAWINA-KRAKÓW | 177.8 km
Tour de Pologne is held between the Tour de France in July and the Vuelta a España in late August. Teams often send young cyclists who are hungry for success or did not fit into the line-ups for the big tours.
Among the tour’s winners, there are many examples of “young wolves” who have become world stars, such as Peter Sagan, Rafał Majka and Michał Kwiatkowski. All of them were under 24 years of age when they reached the top spots at the Tour de Pologne.
PAP, TVP World, tourdepologne.pl