Saint-Georges, May 26, 2009 –
Organizers of the Tour de Beauce return this year with a tested formula for some courses, as several of last year’s layouts will be revisited by the cyclists. Nevertheless, riders will find a few modifications along the way, notably with the addition of the Thetford Mines / Thetford Mines stage.
The debut of the 24th Edition will take place on a proven course for the Lac-Etchemin / Lac-Etchemin stage, a 165-km warm up, which heads north in the region of Bellechasse.
Wednesday, June 10, the organizers are introducing something new this year with the arrival of the Thetford Mines / Thetford Mines stage. Riders should look forward to quite a challenge in the first half of this 161-kiometre stage that highlights the lakes and mountains of the towns surrounding Thetford Mines.
Next, the competitors will have to face the monster climb of Mont Megantic during the 3rd stage on Thursday, June 11, starting in St. Georges and culminating at an observatory perched on top of the highest paved road in Quebec. It’s likely that the first to reach the top of Mont Megantic will also be leading the overall standings at the close of the 2009 Tour de Beauce!
As in the past, Friday, June 12 will be an important day for the cyclists, starting in the morning with a 20-km individual time trial over the same course to be used later on in the summer for the Canadian Championships. In the evening, the whole population is again invited to the Criterium which will be held in the downtown area of St-Georges. Starting at 6:30 pm, the riders will travel 40 laps on the 1.5-km course.
The weekend fare will have Quebec City welcoming the next-to-last stage, starting at noon on Saturday, June 13, near the Parc de la Francophonie, on Grande-Allée. A 13.9-km downtown loop, covered 9 times, will guide the cyclists on the descent of the Sillery hillside and along the river before attacking the “Côte de la Montagne” Street.
After giving quite a show to the Quebec City crowds, the competitors will wind up the 24th Edition by pedaling their last to the applause of the Beauce fans during the traditional 11-km circuit in downtown Saint-Georges. It will be at the end of the 12th lap that the winner will be crowned.