2016 Abu Dhabi Tour to build on 2015’s inaugural worldwide success‏

2016 ABU DHABI TOUR TO BUILD ON 2015’s INAUGURAL WORLDWIDE SUCCESS

British superstar Mark Cavendish confirmed as Official Race Ambassador

2015 impact figures presented in a workshop attended by Mark Cavendish

and UCI president Brian Cookson.

PHOTO CREDIT: ANSA – LUCA LOMBARDI – From left: Lorenzo Giorgetti (Rcs Sports and Events DMCC Ceo), His
Excellency Aref Al Awani (General Secretary – ADSC), Brian Cookson
(President of the Union Cycliste International – UCI), Mark Cavendish
(Abu Dhabi Tour Official Ambassador), Nick McElwee (Sales &
Marketing Director Yas Marina Circuit – YMC)

Abu Dhabi, 26 April 2016 – Abu Dhabi Tour 2016 – the
second edition of the UCI ranked event – will be raced over four stages
between 20 and 23 October this year and will be looking to build on the
huge worldwide exposure of last October’s inaugural Tour and the
following 2015 UCI Cycling Gala. The emirate will also host the second
UCI Cycling Gala, which celebrates the end of the season with cycling’s
elite receiving awards for men, women and teams across various
disciplines, on the evening of the Tour’s final stage (Sunday 23
October).

The Abu Dhabi Tour, an initiative of Abu Dhabi Sports Council (ADSC),
last year recorded a total of 323 hours and 47 minutes of international
broadcast time over its four days. “The ground-breaking introduction of
on-bike camera footage, exclusively for the live television race
coverage and audience, certainly contributed to the event’s
international success,” said His Excellency Aref Al Awani, General Secretary, ADSC.
“For the first time in a men’s professional road race, live on-board
footage, made possible thanks to the collaboration with Velon, was
broadcast in 169 countries. That’s the task we have to beat this year.”

Eurosport broadcast over 18 hours and 45 minutes of coverage of the Tour
which collected over 20 million contacts and reached 11 million unique
viewers while digital media covered the race widely, generating 2,883
articles in 60 countries. Driven also by the dedicated social media
accounts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, the official website (www.abudhabitour.com) recorded around 40,000 unique users per day during the event, exceeding all expectations.

Last year saw an impressive list of cycling aces take part. They
included: UCI Road World Champion Peter Sagan, previous Grand Tour
winners Vincenzo Nibali and Fabio Aru from Italy, Spanish champion
Alejandro Valverde and Belgian puncheurs Philippe Gilbert and Tom
Boonen. “It was a tremendous standard to set for an inaugural event,”
added Al Awani. “The goal this year is to confirm and strengthen our
position locally and internationally. I would like to thank the local
supporting institutions, the Municipalities, Department of Transport and
Abu Dhabi Police. A special mention also goes to all the sponsors,
staff and our Abu Dhabi Tour Ambassador Mark Cavendish, who is confirmed
for the 2016 edition, for their past contributions and those of the
coming months”.

 The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) has recently upgraded the Abu Dhabi Tour from 2.1 to 2.HC on the UCI Asia Tour. Its President Brian Cookson,
speaking from Abu Dhabi, said: “This is a race of the most modern
standards. Last October we admired the first on-board cameras and I
guess it’s only the first of a long series of innovations that could be
tested here and elsewhere. This is why I’m glad we chose Abu Dhabi for
the UCI Cycling Gala 2016: I’m sure it will be a success”.

Mark Cavendish, Official Abu Dhabi Tour Ambassador, said:
“First of all, I’m very happy being appointed the race’s Official
Ambassador again and, this time, I hope to be on the start line at the
Abu Dhabi Tour and try to win at least a stage! Due to an injury, I
missed the first edition but I had the chance to visit all the emirate’s
main attractions. I’ve been twice to the amazing Sheikh Zayed Grand
Mosque, visited the city centre and Yas Island, which I now know quite
well. As a spectator, I really enjoyed the fantastic Jabel Hafeet stage
in Al Ain. I’m definitely curious about the new route”.

Lorenzo Giorgetti, RCS Sports and Events CEO, said: “The
Abu Dhabi Tour project is very ambitious, as confirmed by the results
we have seen today. It’s an extraordinary advertisement for the largest
emirates of the UAE and its territory. Investing in an attractive sport
event such as the Abu Dhabi Tour guarantees an excellent return in terms
of global brand awareness and local public appreciation. We believe the
Abu Dhabi Tour represents a great marketing platform for the most
qualified companies in the region”.

The Tour guests currently in Abu Dhabi went cycling around the stunning
Yas Marina Circuit alongside regular attendees of the weekly ‘Train Yas’
session which opens the F1™ track to local riders and runners. A photo
gallery will follow.

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