City of champions

World’s cyclists to race through Florence and Tuscany in 2013

Editorial Staff
October 7, 2010

‘It's a victory for Italian cycling. It's a victory for Tuscany's great cycling tradition. It's a victory for Franco Ballerini. It's a victory for the great sage Alfredo Martini,' said the president of the Italian Cycling Federation, Renato di Rocco after Florence and Tuscany were awarded the World Road Championships in 2013. It will be the first time that Tuscany hosts the world championships, despite the region's strong cycling tradition.


The Management Committee of the International Cycling Union (UCI) made the announcement from Melbourne, Australia, on September 29, and the city has been abuzz ever since. Four Tuscan cities will host the worldwide event: Florence, Lucca, Montecatini Terme and Pistoia. The main event, including the finish, will take place in Florence, while the nearby Tuscan towns will host part of the week of racing.


Besting rival bids from Ponferrada in Spain, Belgium's Hooglede-Gits and the Italian city of Genoa, Tuscany has dedicated the prestigious nomination to Italian cycling champion Franco Ballerini, the head coach of the Italy's national cycling team who died last February 7 in a car rally accident. ‘Finally, deserved recognition has been awarded to a region that has given so much to this sport. It was a formidable team sprint, in which all parties came together to fight for this extraordinary result. A special memory, on this joyous day, goes to Franco Ballerini,' said regional president, Enrico Rossi.


The 267-kilometre route begins in Lucca on September 29, 2013, and races through Montecatini Terme and Pistoia to finish in the Tuscan capital, Florence.


Fifty-six kilometres will be uphill, at varying altitudes to reach a maximum of 4,468 metres above sea level. Despite giving the world champions such as Magni, Bartali, Nencini, Cipollini and Bettini, this is the first time that Tuscany will host the worlds. The organizing committee is headed by Claudio Rossi.


This year's event is taking place in Melbourne, Australia, while Copenhagen hosts the 2011 championships and the Dutch province of Limburg will host the 2012 edition. The UCI management committee also awarded the 2010 track Paracycling world championships to the city of Montichiari in Brescia.

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