RCS Sport managing director Michele Acquarone has emphasised the inaugural Tour of Dubai will not clash with the ASO run Tours of Qatar and Oman in 2014.
Acquarone briefly left the Giro d’Italia to attend a press conference with colleagues and Dubai Sports Council dignitaries in Pescara today where the February 5-8 race was confirmed.
The Qatar Olympic Committee has listed on its website that the 2014 Ladies Tour of Qatar will run from January 28-31, and the men’s from February 2-7, which overlaps with the confirmed dates of the Dubai venture. Oman is reportedly set to commence from February 9.
But Acquarone said the RCS and ASO events will not conflict. That then means the currently specified date for the men’s Tour of Qatar, which Britain’s Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) won this year, will have to pushed back.
“The Dubai Tour was put forward because our friends ASO had a problem of overlapping between the men’s and women’s tours, so this was for us the best solution to allow the teams to enjoy the experience,” Acquarone said.
“The Dubai tour is the youngest race but we will try to make it the best and a showcase for cycling as whole.”
The race is likely to be added to the UCI Asia Tour calendar. Race organisers hope it, like Qatar and Oman, will attract a majority of WorldTour teams.
Acquarone said riders had already expressed interest in the event, the course for which is to be determined and announced at a later date.
“As far as the course is involved we’re still working [on it] so we’re not going to say anything today, but we’ll try to make it a technical, interesting and difficult course,” he said.
“Our friends were able to set out a ski slope in the heart of Dubai, so I know once they understand what cycling is about, we will be able to work with them to create something unique.”
The RCS has views to develop a women’s race in the future.