San Antonio chosen to host international cycling race affiliated with Tour de France next year

‘San Antonio was specifically chosen because of our culture, proximity to Mexico and good riding community,’ San Antonio Sports CEO says

Britain's Hugh John Carthy rides in the pack during the stage 12 of the Tour de France cycling race over 218 kilometers from Chauvigny to Sarran, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2020. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)
Britain's Hugh John Carthy rides in the pack during the stage 12 of the Tour de France cycling race over 218 kilometers from Chauvigny to Sarran, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2020. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus) (Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

SAN ANTONIO – What do the French Loire Valley and San Antonio have in common? Well, in 2022, the Alamo City will have its own international cycling event, hosted by L’Etape, the same group that runs the Tour de France.

The international cycling race event will come to the Alamo City April 8-10, 2022. An official announcement by San Antonio Sports—the area nonprofit and sports commission that looks to transform the community through sporting events— is planned for June 1 with more race details.

The announcement of the event was first reported by the San Antonio Report on Friday.

L’Etape will host races in 14 different countries in 2021, including three in Mexico and one in Canada.

According to San Antonio Sports President and CEO Russ Bookbinder, the event will be multi-terrain and built for various cyclists.

“This is a premier event. It’s an international event. It will range from riders at the pro level down to kids races,” Bookbinder said. “But the one thing from our perspective and for the health of our community, we look at what the Rock and Roll Marathon did when we brought that to San Antonio, what that did for the running community and lifting the health of our community—we think this could do to cycling in the area what the Rock and Roll Marathon did to running.”

According to Bookbinder, San Antonio was chosen to host the race because of its unique culture and proximity to Mexico.

“San Antonio was specifically chosen because of our culture, proximity to Mexico and good riding community,” Bookbinder said. “The fact that our community knows how to operate major events, and we come together—whether it’s at the city or the county and hotel community—everybody pulls together and we’ve got a great volunteer community right here for the event.”

Bookbinder said that while each event that the city hosts is different, organizers are able to take lessons learned and apply them for an even greater guest experience in the future.

In terms of crowd appeal, Bookbinder said that the race will probably draw riders from the San Antonio area, Hill Country and internationally.

“This race will draw from around the country. Obviously, (the race) will draw in Texas, our region, but probably half the ridership coming in from outside San Antonio,” Bookbinder said.

You can learn more about L’Etape at its website here.

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