Quebec pushes to bring 2015 world road race championships to Canada
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Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Quebec pushes to bring 2015 world road race championships to Canada

by Shane Stokes at 4:41 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, World Championships
 
GP Quebec organiser Serge Arsenault behind application

Thor HushovdCanada will bid to host the world road race championships for only the third time in history, with the Canadian Cycling Association confirming this week that Quebec is bidding for the 2015 worlds.

The country already hosted the championships in Montreal in 1974 and again in Hamilton seven years ago. Eddy Merckx (Belgium) and Igor Astarloa (Spain) took rainbow jerseys there.

The country’s chances have likely been boosted by the successful running of two UCI ProTour events there this year, the Grand Prix Montreal and Quebec. Both received glowing praise afterwards, with many believing that the routes used would make fine world championships courses. The success of riders such as Ryder Hesjedal ensure a growing interest in the sport, and this too could help.

The Canadian Cycling Association had sought applicants for the worlds bid, setting a deadline of November 7th. Quebec was the only one to submit a letter of intention, with the GP Quebec organiser Serge Arsenault being behind that application.

He now has their full backing. “With this initial deadline passed, the CCA will now work exclusively with Mr. Arsenault on the necessary candidature file to meet the specific deadlines set out in the bid process,” the association said in a statement. “The CCA looks forward to working with Mr. Arsenault and the other partners to ensure that the bid goes forward with the necessary requirements met and the strongest possible support.”

Apart from hosting those two successful ProTour events, Canada was also the location for two world championships in 2010. The UCI Para-cycling World Championships took place in Baie-Comeau. The UCI Mountain Bike and Trial World Championships were held in Mont-Sainte-Anne.

The world road race championships has been held outside Europe on just seven occasions. Montreal in 1974 was the first, and was followed by San Cristóbal (1977), Colorado Springs (1986), Utsunomiya (1990), Duitama (1995), Hamilton (2003) and Melbourne/Geelong this year.

Pat McQuaid said after the most recent edition that the success of the project made it much more likely that the UCI will head outside Europe again. He has often stated that the worldwide expansion of the sport is one of his biggest goals as UCI President.

“For our sport and for us in cycling we’re trying very hard to globalise the sport,” he said at the worlds.

“The images that have gone [out from Geelong] and the memories that will go back with the Europeans to Europe means it’s much easier for us in the UCI to suggest going outside of Europe in the future for world championships.”

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