Tour of the Green Heart

At the congress of the UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale), held during the cycling world championships in Salzburg, Austria, it was decided that a major new Dutch cycle race should be included in the international calendar for Elite riders with contracts. This Ronde van het Groene Hart (Tour of the Green Heart) will take place for the first time on Sunday 25 March 2007.
The cycle race is the idea of the organizer of the event, ARCAM’s director Maarten Kloos. Kloos also observed that the area does not mean much to the average Dutch person and that this needs to change. The Tour of the Green Heart is therefore also intended to draw attention to this unique area and to raise its profile as the superb garden of one of the most urbanized parts of the Netherlands, Randstad Holland.
The Tour of the Green Heart is to be a one-day city-to-city race and is classified as a 1:1 race on the UCI calendar. This means that the major ProTour teams, such as Rabobank, CSC, T-Mobile, Gerolsteiner, Milram, Discovery Channel, QuickStep-Innergetic, Davitamon Lotto and can take part. In addition, Professional Continental Teams such as the Dutch Skil-Shimano and Dutch Continental Teams are expected to compete.
The 200-kilometre-long route will go straight through the Green Heart and take in the cities of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Leiden, Zoetermeer, Utrecht and Gouda. The finish line will be on Pompmolenlaan in Woerden. The organizers are currently negotiating with a number of television stations regarding a live television broadcast of the race and the events to be organized alongside it. The cultural events will take place in architecture centres in the cities mentioned. A symposium about the future of the Green Heart will be held in either the starting or the finishing place.