At first, it was an enigma. Terra incognita on the map of the cycling world in the early 21st century. Qatar intrigued, then surprised, and finally, conquered.
From all over the world professional cyclists continue to come in search of the gentle, early spring, part of the allure that beckons them here at the start of every season. Once they arrive, their expectations are surpassed by a racecourse atypical in so many respects. For example, Qatar’s unruly winds offer unexpected advantages, but also, make great demands on everyone.
It is the potential of these changing scenarios that attracts the Classics’s experts to the Tour of Qatar every year. They come, following their intuition, and it pays off. The list of champions for each stage seems to predict, every year, the men who will then go on to shine in the great Classics at Roubaix, Tours, San Remo or Hamburg.
Now, the prospect of the World Championships in 2016, the first ever in the Middle East, will give them an added reason to be diligent and dedicated at their rendezvous in Qatar.
Khalid bin Ali Al-Thani
President of the Qatar Cycling Federation