Starting next year, the Tour de Suisse will open with the team presentation on Saturday
In June, the Tour de Suisse Association became the new organising body of the tour.
Like the newly formed agency Cycling Unlimited AG, the association consists of the international sports marketing group Infront Sports & Media AG, the national cycling association Swiss Cycling (which also holds the rights to the Tour de Suisse), the marketing agency Protouchglobal GmbH and the organiser Tortour GmbH.
The UCI WorldTour stage race will be held under the direction of Olivier Senn (TdS Director up to 2018) and Joko Vogel (Tortour).
«This fusion between the powerhouses of Swiss cycling and the Tour de Suisse Association has given rise to a platform for cycling enthusiasts that covers all levels of the sport, from recreational through to elite», says Joko Vogel about the move.
The first big change will see the Tour de Suisse 2020 shortened to eight race days. The tour will now start on Sunday and finish on the following Sunday. The Tour de Suisse event experience, however, will keep its familiar nine-day format.
The popular team presentation will now take place on the Saturday. The traditional opening weekend will be flanked by many attractions for cycling fans on the Saturday, with a bike race for the public, the popular Bike World and other supporting events planned for the kick-off in Frauenfeld.
«As could be seen at the hub in Langnau im Emmental during this year’s impressive opening weekend, the combination of team presentation, public race and elite pro racing helped make the event the perfect cycling festival for the whole family – in fact, no, the whole town!» said Tour Director Olivier Senn.
The new format for the opening weekend will also make Switzerland more attractive as a venue for professional cycling. The change will benefit the Gippingen Cycling Days, with the event now being able to move to the more popular Friday, meaning Switzerland will be able to enjoy 10 full days of cycling action.
This is fully in line with the objectives of the new organising body that wants to exploit synergies and strengthen the sport as a whole.
Joko Vogel: «Our aim is to make the Tour de Suisse fit for the future. We want to step it up a couple of gears from 2021!»