Russia’s national cycling federation (FVSR) has revealed plans for a week-long race which it hopes will earn WorldTour status and become “a smaller version of the famous Tour de France race.”
Russia is emerging as a regular host of major sporting events, with the country set to put on the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, a Formula One Grand Prix in the same year, and the 2018 World Cup.
And the race could be on the calendar as early as next year, according to former FVSR president Alexander Gusyatnikov.
“It’s an ambitious project but we think we can do it,” Gusyatnikov told Reuters. “We plan to call it the Tour of Russia — a smaller version of the famous Tour de France race. It would start in St Petersburg, continue to Moscow, then riders would fly to Sochi for another three or four days through the Caucasus mountains.
“We hope to submit our proposal to UCI by June to have the race on the international calendar for next year but if we’re not ready next year we’ll definitely stage it in 2014.”