Two Weeks Until ‘Tour of Croatia’: World’s Best Cyclists, 1075 km Across Croatia, Six Stages!

Daniela Rogulj

The world’s leading cyclists will travel 1075 kilometers across Croatia in six stages for the fourth edition of ‘Tour of Croatia’, held from April 17th to 22nd, 2018.  

Since its re-launch under the helm of the celebrated former cyclist Vladimir Miholjević in 2015, the international cycling race ‘Tour of Croatia’ has grown year after year. The Union Cycliste Internationale UCI) has categorized this year’s race as HC (Hors Category), which is the second highest ranking racing race right behind the WT (WorldTour). Therefore, 70 percent of teams with WT licenses can participate in this year’s Croatian cycling spectacle, reports on April 4, 2018.

This year, at the start of the first stage in Osijek, cyclists from three World Tour teams (Bahrain, Astana and Trek) will take off, while Dimension Data has pulled out due to many injured cyclists, and primarily their British star Mark Cavendish whose fall three weeks ago resulted in multiple fractures. Next to these top three, 12 ProContiental teams and five continental teams will be at the start, including the best Croatian squad, Meridiana Kamen.

Along with four flat stages in the race where the best sprinters should come to the fore, two stages of this year’s race will end on an incline, promising only the most exciting finishes. Particularly attractive is the end of the third stage which will travel from Trogir to the top of Biokovo. In the last 29 kilometers of this stage, from Podgora to Sv. Jure, cyclists will climb 1762 meters. Along with the climb to Sv. Sure, participants hoping for an overall victory will have the chance to finish in the fifth stage where they will climb Učka, first from the Istrian side and then from the Kvarner side.

“Tour of Croatia is the primary sporting event as we are the highest ranked race in the region this year, but it is also a major tourist event for our country. During this year’s race, the caravan will travel through more than 100 locations, municipalities and cities, which will be exhibited to more than 180 countries. We are especially proud that the distribution will be operated by ASO, the owner of the world’s largest cycling race ‘Tour de France’, who has also joined us and offered us cooperation. Also, for this race as well as for all the previous races, the television production will be carried out by the Spanish company ISB, which has transferred the Olympic Games for years,” said the director of the race, Vladimir Miholjevic, who announced plans for additional accompanying events in the coming years.

“This is a long-term project, but it’s not easy to maintain, and that’s why we take it year to year. We know that many cyclists following the race through TV screens come to Croatia and cycle the entire route, so next year we are planning to launch the ‘Queen stage Granfondo’ project so that recreational cyclists can take on the route alone a few hours before the professionals take on the toughest stage of the race. Then, in cooperation with the Environmental Protection Fund, we plan to organize school races in the host cities of Tour of Croatia, with the aim to collect recyclable materials. We would like to organize a ‘Kid’s Tour of Croatia’ so that schoolchildren can ride the last few kilometers of each stage, and the winners will receive prizes at the same stages where the professional winners are awarded.”

Since its first edition, the ‘Tour of Croatia’ has been sponsored by President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, along with the Central State Sports Office and the Croatian National Tourist Board. The organization has also included the Ministry of Interior to ensure that no security incidents occurred in the first three editions, as well as any future events. The Chief of the Police Administration, Krunoslav Borovec, said that for the safety of competitors and spectators, 250 policemen, 75 motorcycles and 50 cars were engaged to protect those attending last year’s race.

Tour of Croatia Stages/Route:

April 17, 1st stage: Osijek – Koprivnica – 227km

April 18th, 2nd stage: Karlovac – Zadar – 234.5km

April 19, 3rd stage: Trogir – Biokovo (Sveti Jure) – 134km

April 20, 4th stage: Starigrad / Paklenica – Crikvenica – 171km

April 21, 5th stage: Rabac – Učka (Poklon) – 156.5km

April 22, 6th stage: Samobor – Zagreb – 151.5km


2015 – Maciej Paterski (Poland)

2016 – MATIJA KVASINA (Crotia)

2017 – Vincenzo Nibali (Italy)


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