The UAE Tour is now set to be the first WorldTour race of the 2021 season, scheduled to kick off on February 21.
As the only WorldTour race in the Middle East, the event has been a popular starting point of the season for a number of star riders, including former winners Primož Roglič and Adam Yates.
This year the seven-stage race will be the first major event on the cycling calendar after the cancellation of the Tour Down Under, the traditional start of the WorldTour season, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Organisers of the UAE Tour have confirmed that all 19 WorldTour teams will be racing their event this year, which runs from February 21-27, while Mathieu van der Poel’s Alpecin Fenix team have also received an invite.
Last year’s race was cut short due to a coronavirus outbreak – the first cycling event affected by the pandemic before the entire season was suspended for around five months – as Adam Yates was crowned overall winner.
The event, which usually features a selection of sprint and uphill finishes, will be the first time all WorldTour teams will compete against each other in 2021.
The full route is also set to be announced in the coming weeks, although we do know this year’s race will start and finish in Abu Dhabi.
Organisers say the strict Covid-19 protocols will also be published before the event to ensure the safety of riders and staff.
UAE Tour 2021 provisional team list
Deceuninck – Quick-Step
Israel Start-Up Nation
UAE Team Emirates