Warren Barguil: "I can't wait to
visit Japan"

Friday, October 10th

Warren Barguil is one of the champions who will be travelling to Japan, and has the honour of being invited to the 2014 Tour de France Saitama Criterium without having raced in the Tour! But the... Read more

Arashiro takes japanese cycling
into the spotlight

Friday, October 3rd

From Nibali and Kittel to Péraud and Démare, the Saitama Criterium will shine with the stars of the Tour de France on October 25. Japanese riders will also draw the spotlight on an event many... Read more

Nibali Will Also Make The Journey

Thursday, September 25th

This morning in Saitama, the organisers of the 2014 Tour de France Saitama Criterium revealed, in the presence of the city's Mayor, Mr Hayato Shimizu, the list of riders expected to contest the... Read more

Froome Signs Up

Tuesday, September 23rd

Several days before the announcement of the pack's composition for the 2014 Tour de France Saitama Criterium, Chris Froome, winner of the 100th Tour, accepted the organisers' invitation and will be... Read more

Le Tour de France Saitama
Criterium 2014 : Get...

Friday, July 18th

The next Le Tour de France Saitama Criterium 2014 will take place on October 25th. The top riders from the 2014 Tour will be there to tackle a modified urban route that will pass this year through... Read more

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Le Tour de France Saitama Criterium 2014 : Get involved !

news18.07.2014Pre-race

26 October 2013 1st Saitama Criterium - © Yuzuru Sunada

The next Le Tour de France Saitama Criterium 2014 will take place on October 25th. The top riders from the 2014 Tour will be there to tackle a modified urban route that will pass this year through the Saitama Super Arena, one of the biggest indoor arenas in the world. Thrills are guaranteed...

For around thirty riders in the 100th Tour de France, the 2013 season ended on a high note when they were invited to take part in the first edition of the Saitama Criterium by Le Tour de France. Chris Froome signed off his last demonstration of the year there, Peter Sagan found stronger rivals than him on the cinder track where he fought it out with Sumo wrestlers, and Marcel Kittel put his speed into context by attending a Moto GP race for the first time! World champion Rui Costa, Frenchman Romain Bardet and the Aussies Richie Porte and Simon Gerrans all have great memories of their stay in Japan thanks to the unexpected fervour of the public in Saitama (more than 200,000 people along the route). The top riders were really impressed by the size of the event, and have become ambassadors for it in the peloton.

Since then, in the wake of the conquest of the Yellow Jersey and the other prizes in the Tour de France, riders have been chasing invitations for the second edition of the Criterium of Saitama, which will take place next October 25th. The ‘menu' for the weekend has been modified to provide an even stronger cultural experience, and also to provide sensations that have probably never been felt before in sports events. The champions who shine in the classics are familiar with, for example, the adrenalin surge on entering the Velodrome in Roubaix, being carried along by the enthusiasm of the fans at Alpe d'Huez or, more recently, those lining the route at Butterbubs in Yorkshire. The wave of fervour they will feel in Japan is even stronger as they enter the Saitama Super Arena, the recent venue for concerts by Lady Gaga or Muse in Japan.

Passing through the Saitama Super Arena on each lap of the circuit is one of the changes made to the route. Slightly longer at 3.1 kilometres (2.7 in 2013), the main advantage is that more spectators can be accommodated. The forthcoming event aims to spread the passion for cycling, as Amaury Sport Organisation President Jean-Etienne Amaury explains: “Last year the riders were welcomed with unbelievable enthusiasm. This shows that our innovative ideas respond to people's expectations both in Japan and in other places in the world. The new feature of entering the Saitama Super Arena is an example of our approach to all the events we organise: move the spectacle around, change the scenarios… that is one of the ways to arouse interest in our sports.”

Hayato Shimizu, Mayor of Saitama:

“It is a great pleasure for us to offer such an exciting race to the whole world. The circuit for the 2014 Le Tour de France Saitama Criterium will bring a new feature to this 100-year-plus event. It will be an impressive sight to see the riders pass through the Saitama Super Arena, the biggest indoor arena in Japan. I cannot wait to see it next October 25th.”

The race in pictures

photo17/07/2014 

26 October 2013 1st Saitama Criterium - © Yuzuru Sunada

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