October 1, 2019 – On Tuesday at 12:10 pm, the first stage of the cycling spectacle CRO Race will set off from Osijek to Lipik.
“When we started the project, we were aiming for the spring so our race could serve as a preparation for the ‘Giro d’Italia’, but now we see that this week is ideal and a hole-in-one after the World Cup and the final ‘WorldTour’ races like Lombardy,” said race director Vladimir Miholjevic.
HRT reports that the new racing term has also brought about a change in concept – and given the end of the season, there are no longer extreme and extensive stages. The longest stage will be precisely the first section from Osijek to Lipik, which is 200 kilometers long, while by the end of the week, the cyclists will ride another stage that is 183 kilometers (Slunj-Zadar). Three stages are about 150 kilometers (Okrug-Makarska, Starigrad- Crikvenica and Sveta Nedelja-Zagreb), while the “royal” fifth stage with the highest climb from Rabac to Platak will be only 136 kilometers long.
The biggest names on the start list for this year’s CRO Race are Britain’s Adam Yates, a member of the Australian Mitchelton-Scott team and Slovenian Matej Mohoric, a Bahrain-Meride driver.
Among the 117 cyclists will be only two Croats, 40-year-old Radoslav Rogina from the Slovenian team Adria Mobil and 24-year-old Josip Rumac, a member of the Italian squad Androni Giocattoli.
This is the fifth consecutive edition of the cycling race through Croatia, which is being held under the new name Cro Race, and in a new term from October 1-6.
Like in previous years, the race will be broadcast daily by Croatian Radio and Television with ten hours of live television broadcasts and a total of three hours of recaps. The live show will also be on Eurosport and, thanks to the collaboration with A.S.O., will broadcast on numerous television stations from as many as six continents – in Europe, North and South America, Asia, Africa, and Australia – in as many as 190 countries, some of which will also show a live broadcast.
New this year is that for the US racing market, the race will be streamed live via GCN, the largest cycling online video site. In addition, the race will also be shown on a number of intercontinental airlines.
The organizer of the race is Top Sport Events, which has already proven itself to be a successful organizer of the last four editions of ‘Tour of Croatia’, led by the celebrated former Croatian cyclist Vladimir Miholjevic. “I thank all state institutions, counties, and cities, partners and sponsors for staying with us and supporting this project, and I am also pleased to be surrounded by associates who have been with us since the first year. We are all even more motivated to show Croatia and the world that we are ready to host the event at such a high competitive level and that we are a country that strives for sports success and can amaze the whole world with its natural beauties and heritage,” said Miholjevic.
This year, the most beautiful parts of Croatia, or as many as fourteen national and nature parks, are included in the race: PP Kopacki rit, PP Papuk, PP Lonjsko polje, NP Plitvice lakes, PP Vransko jezero, PP Biokovo, NP Krka, NP Paklenica, NP Northern Velebit, Velebit, Učka, Risnjak, Žumberak – Samobor Highlands and Medvednica Nature Park. Thus, during the race itself, the most beautiful postcard of Croatia will be broadcast to the world.
The race begins on Tuesday, October 1st in Osijek and passes through Našice, Kutjevo, Pleternica, Velika, Pozega, Pakrac and other places in Osijek-Baranja and Pozega-Slavonia County, with the finish in Lipik. The first stage of the race will include three nature parks: Kopacki rit, Papuk and Lonjsko polje. The next day, cyclists leave Slunj via Plitvice Lakes National Park towards Velebit Nature Park, from which they descend into Zadar County, or towards Zadar, where several exciting circles on the peninsula and an attractive sprint along the city walls are expected. The third day is created for the climbers who, after the start in Okrug, will follow the path of Biokovo and return to the finish in Makarska. During this stage, cyclists will see the beauty of Split-Dalmatia County, especially Central Dalmatia and the Makarska Riviera – Brela, Baska Voda, Tucepi, and Podgora.
The fourth stage begins in Zadar County in Starigrad, next to the Paklenica National Park, and along the old highway, it rides the southwestern slopes of Velebit across Senj towards the Primorje-Gorski Kotar County with a view to Crikvenica.
Last year, Rabac and Labin were excellent hosts, and they will continue this year for the fifth stage, which will start from Rabac with an ascent to Labin and then through Ucka to Icici, Opatija, Rijeka and Cavle. For this stage, the finish is at Platak, which is also the first time it has been involved in the race. This year, Sveta Nedelja was chosen for the start of the final stage, after which cyclists will head to Zagreb, Velika Gorica, Dugo Selo, Vrbovec and Sveti Ivan Zelina and return to Zagreb through the eastern part of Zagreb County to the finish at St. Mark’s Square.
You can read more about CRO Race here.
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