The UAE Tour is set to make cycling history next year, as 20 teams of the world’s top female cyclists descend on the Middle East for the first ever Women’s WorldTour race in the region.
Marking an important step for international cycling and women’s sport as a whole, the introduction of the event into the UCI Women’s WorldTour calendar showcases cycling’s growth in popularity, offering local cycling fans greater opportunities to experience world-class racing in the region. The route for the Women’s tour will see riders take on the UAE’s unique and varied terrain and pass significant landmarks. The full routes will be announced in January 2023.
Organised by the Abu Dhabi Sports Council and taking place from 9-12 February, the UCI Women’s WorldTour race will run ahead of the 5th edition of the men’s WorldTour race, the UAE Tour, taking place from 20-26 February.
The UAE has rapidly become a hub for cycling, having successfully hosted many professional races in the form of the Dubai Tour, Abu Dhabi Tour and UAE Tour. With support for, and investment in, women’s professional cycling growing exponentially across the globe, the addition of the UAE Women’s Tour is another huge success for the region. Following a boom in interest in cycling in the Emirates and the introduction of the women’s team, UAE Team ADQ, in 2022, this latest announcement showcases an exciting step in the country’s development in cycling, and the efforts being made to promote professional women’s cycling across the region.
H.E. Aref Al Awani, General Secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council said: “We are excited to add another world class cycling event to the WorldTour calendar with the UAE Tour UCI Women’s WorldTour race. As a favourite in the UCI cycling calendar, the UAE Tour has been a great opportunity to showcase our country’s diverse territories and historic sites to the world, and with the new UCI Women’s WorldTour, we represent both an exciting milestone for the country’s development in cycling, and showcase the strides we have taken to promote professional women’s cycling in the region.”
Fabrizio D’Amico, Chief Operating Officer RCS Sports and Events and UAE Tour Director added: “Seeing the Women’s UAE Tour coming to reality is something we are very proud of. With the Abu Dhabi Sports Council we worked with the objective of bringing further cycling excitement to the region and in doing so, it is therefore natural to offer the same playing field to women with a women’s version of the UAE Tour at the same level as the men’s race.
We want this new race to become one of the best and most important races of the UCI Women’s WorldTour calendar with the goal also to help the development of women’s cycling within the Country and the whole Continent.