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Wednesday, January 30, 2008

2008 Tour of Missouri route announced

Organizers of the Tour of Missouri have announced the start/finish cities for the 2008 race. They are:

STAGE 1 / Monday, Sept. 8
St. Joseph to Kansas City, road race with circuits (90 mi / 144.81 km)

STAGE 2 / Tuesday, September 9
Clinton to Springfield, road race with circuits (125 mi / 201.13 km)

STAGE 3 / Wednesday, September 10
Branson, individual time trial (18 mi / 28.6 km)

STAGE 4 / Thursday, September 11
Lebanon to Rolla, road race with circuits (105 mi / 168.95 km)

STAGE 5 / Friday, September 12
St. James to Jefferson City, road race with circuits (100 mi / 160.9 km)

STAGE 6 / Saturday, September 13
Hermann to St. Charles, road race (110 mi / 177 km)

STAGE 7 / Sunday, September 14
St. Louis, circuit race (75 mi / 120.68 km)

The racers can expect more undulating rolling hills on this year's route. While there aren't any major climbs by professional cycling standards, the riders on the 2007 ride learned that Missouri isn't a flat state by any means.

It wasn't surprising to learn the Tour of Missouri is returning to St. Louis, Kansas City, Springfield and Branson, since those were the cities than drew the biggest crowds last year. The addition of a stage allows the Tour to add a stage along old Route 66 between Lebanon and Rolla. The exact routes of the stages will be announced later.

"The Tour of Missouri is perfectly positioned between the Olympic Games in Bejing and the World Championships in late September," said Chris Aronhalt, managing partner of the event organizers Medalist Sports, in a press release. "We can expect the field to include some of the top cyclists who have either competed in the Games or are preparing for the Worlds. This will be a good course for them."

The Tour of Missouri will field 120 of the world's top cyclists, many of whom raced in last year's inaugural race and were very happy with the terrain.

"Winning the Tour of Missouri was one of the highlights of my season. I received tremendous support from everyone and the fans along the route were awesome. The Tour of Missouri goes through some beautiful countryside, and I hope to return in September," George Hincapie, 2007 Tour of Missouri overall winner said in the press release.

Here are some links to some stories about the 2008 Tour of Missouri:

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