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Nice to hold first ever elite European Road Championships

Josh Cunningham
15 Mar 2016

Vincenzo Nibali and Alberto Contador are among the names to confirm for the event, which will run 14th-18th September.

The European Cycling Union (UEC) announced at the weekend that 2016 will see the first ever elite European Championships come to being in the city of Nice, between the 14th and 18th Septmeber. 

The European Road Championships is not a new event, first appearing in 1995, but until now has only been run for junior and u23 riders. However with the announcement of both men's and women's elite championships, Alberto Contador, Vincenzo Nibali, Fabio Aru and Philippe Gilbert are already among the names to have confirmed their wish to take to the start line. Coming after the Vuelta a Espana and Tour of Britain, but before the World Championships, the event holds a useful slot on the calendar. 

’I am very happy to return to the European Championships, in which I participated in the Espoir category in 2004, in Estonia,' said Nibali in a press release. 'I raced in the time trial and finished in 8th place. It was a very nice experience to wear the jersey of the Squadra Azzura, and I will be thrilled to do it again in a few months on this demanding course that awaits us between Monaco and Nice.'

The course, which starts in Monaco before a loop into the Var region and multiple ascents of the famous Col d'Eze - most recently seen in the final stage of this year's Paris-Nice, won by Geraint Thomas - will likely be one for the climbers. UEC have taken guidance from Tour de France organisers ASO on the format and courses used over the week, taking advantage of the knowledge gained during Tour's visit to Monaco for the 2009 Grand Depart.

'I have some very particular memories of the course of these Championships: my first major victory was in Nice in 2007, and we had to ride over the col d’Eze,' added Alberto Contador.     

THE PROGRAMME

Wednesday 14 September

ITT Junior Women (11 km) / ITT Junior Men (20 km) + ITT U23 men (32 km)

Thursday 15 September

ITT Elite and Espoir Women (20 km) / ITT Elite Men (37 km)

Friday 16 September

Road Race Junior women (51 km) / Road race Espoir men (138 km)

Saturday 17 September

Road Race Elite + Espoir women (113 km) / Road Race Junior men (113 km)

Sunday 18 September

Road Race Elite men (215 km)

 

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