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Mark Cavendish renews his committent as the Abu Dhabi Tour's Official Ambassador

Despite needing to undergo surgery on his left shoulder to repair damage sustained in a race crash two weeks ago, the Manxman will still attend the debut pro cycling race in the UAE capital

 Abu Dhabi, 22 September 2015 – Within a week of unveiling the four Abu Dhabi Tour jerseys, Mark Cavendish was forced to end early his racing season. On 8 October the Etixx – Quick-Step rider will not be lining up at the start in the ADNOC stage, the beginning of the Abu Dhabi Tour, but he will still be present as the Official Ambassador.


“It has been a very difficult decision,” said Cavendish about choosing to have surgery. “However, 10 days after the crash, I’m still in pain and I can’t lift or pull much weight. I’m so disappointed to end the season like this; the UCI World Championships and the Abu Dhabi Tour were two important objectives for the end of my season. But there’s nothing I can do now except take a period of rest, and then start with intensive rehab.”

“We regret Mark Cavendish’s absence from the race itself,” commented Mr. Aref Hamad Al Awani, Abu Dhabi Sports Council General Secretary, “but he still remains a Guest of Honour of the first Abu Dhabi Tour. Depending on his recovery, we will be glad to involve Mark in all the official activities, including the UCI Cycling Gala awards ceremony.”
 
#RideToAbuDhabi
The Abu Dhabi Tour, organised by the Abu Dhabi Sports Council in collaboration with RCS Sport, will take place from 8 to 11 October. It consists of four stages covering a total distance of 555km; three stages favour the sprinters, while the remaining stage (the 3rd), finishing uphill after a 750m climb with gradients touching 12%, will probably decide the General Classification.

#UCICyclingGala
In the evening of the last day the Tour will have the honour of hosting the very first UCI Cycling Gala awards ceremony. It’s a unique event to celebrate the end of the UCI professional road cycling season and its stakeholders in Abu Dhabi.

ROUTE INFORMATION
Stage 1 – The ADNOC Stage (175km): The entire stage takes place in the stunning Rub al Khali desert, part of Abu Dhabi’s Western Region. Starting among the red sand dunes that surround the beautiful Qasr Al Sarab Resort, the undulating race route accrues around 1,200m of vertical climbing. The riders will trace a ring around Liwa and the nearby oasis, passing through the town twice. The riders then head north along straight roads for 55km, with the slightest of downhill gradients, as far as the town of Madinat Zayed. After the first crossing of the finish line, the peloton then enters a final 15km loop, to be ridden just once. A mass sprint is expected, although the desert winds could influence the outcome.

Stage 2 – The Capital Stage (130km): A flat stage across the city, starting at the Yas Marina Circuit and heading towards the southern part of the city along wide and mostly straight roads. After the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and the Exhibition Hall, the peloton turns back on itself, returning to Yas Island, then follows the Corniche until the Emirates Palace. There the riders will face a U-turn, cycling again alongside the Corniche until Yas Island, where the finish line is positioned next to the Yas Mall. Again, a mass sprint is expected.

Stage 3 – The Al Ain Stage (140km): The toughest stage of the inaugural Abu Dhabi Tour. Starting from Al Qattara Souq, the first 33km follow a series of broad, straight roads, then the peloton will trace a wide circle around the city, crossing the Green Mubazzarah oasis before starting the final climb. 11km long, the Jebel Hafeet ascent reaches an altitude of 1,000m on gradients that average 7.5% and touch 12% on the lower slopes. The climb, on wide, well surfaced roads and with long, sweeping bends, eases into a short descent with 1.5km to go, before resuming a shallow climb to the finish line. The final climb will, in all probability, decide the General Classification.

Stage 4 – The Yas Stage (110km): The entire stage takes place at night, under the floodlights of the Yas Marina Circuit. 110km at night under the floodlights of the F1 Circuit. The peloton will complete 20 laps (5.5km each) culminating in the last Abu Dhabi Tour sprint. The circuit is wide and the surface is in impeccable condition.


PHOTO CREDIT: TARA ATKINSON

Links: Abu Dhabi Tour downloads site for all content

 

SHIFT Active Media
Manolo Bertocchi

 
RCS Sport Cycling Press Office
Ph.: (+44) 1225 448333
Ph. (+44) 7979 241227
E-mail: manolo@shiftactivemedia.com
Tw.: @Shiftactive @ItalianManolo

RCS Sport
Stefano Diciatteo

 
RCS Sport Press Office Coordinator
Ph.: (+39) 02 25848758
Mob.: (+39) 335 5468466
E-mail: Stefano.diciatteo@rcs.it
Tw.: @rcssport - @stedicia

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