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Qatar Airways Sponsors 11th Annual Tour Of Qatar Cycling Event

More than 200 international cyclists will converge on Qatar for some fine racing that is expected to attract huge crowds lining the race route.

The nine-day Tour around the tiny Gulf state of Qatar will see the best male and female cyclists compete for the coveted titles. In the men’s event, distinguished names such as world champion, Briton Mark Cavendish, Norway’s former world champion Thor Hushovd, defending champion Australian Mark Renshaw and Belgian racer Tom Boonen, winner of several Tour of Qatar races, will all be aiming high for the top prize.

Mark Cavendish will return to Doha to compete in the event for the fifth time with Swiss Olympic champion Fabian Cancellara also aiming for the winner’s jacket.

In the women’s race, Kirsten Wild and defending champion Ellen Van Dijk, from Holland, will return to Qatar bidding for top honours.

The women’s tour will run from February 1 – 3, while the men will compete for the title from February 5 – 10.

Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said the airline was proud to be associated with one of the world’s leading cycling events in line with the country’s strong tradition to support leading sporting tournaments and events.

“For the past 11 years, this prestigious event has brought some of the world’s best male and female cyclists to our capital city of Doha for some fine racing over almost two weeks.

“We look forward to bringing our 5-star service to the athletes arriving in our city and we wish them all the best as the competition gets underway this week.”

Tour Schedule
Stages in the Ladies Tour of Qatar circuit:
Stage 1Wednesday 1st FebruaryCamel race Track – Al Khor Corniche
Stage 2Thursday 2nd FebruaryAl Zubara Fort – Madinat Al Shamal
(114.5 km)
Stage 3Friday 3rd FebruaryKatara Cultural Village – Katara Cultural Village
(92.5 km)
Stages in the Men’s Tour of Qatar circuit are:
Stage 1Sunday 5th FebruaryBarzan Towers – Doha Golf Club
(142.5 km)
Stage 2Monday 6th FebruaryLusail Circuit
(team time-trial 11.3 km)
Stage 3Tuesday 7th FebruaryDukhan – Al Gharafa Stadium
(146.5 km)
Stage 4Wednesday 8th FebruaryAl Thakhira – Madinat Al Shamal
(144 km)
Stage 5Thursday 9th FebruaryCamel Race Track – Al Khor Corniche
(160 km)
Stage 6Friday 10th FebruarySealine Beach Resort – Doha Corniche
(120 km)
Qatar Airways operates a modern fleet of 104 aircraft from its Doha hub to 110 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, North America and South America.

During 2012, Qatar Airways will launch flights to nine new destinations: Baku (Azerbaijan) on February 1; Tbilisi (Georgia) on February 1; Kigali (Rwanda) on March 21; Zagreb (Croatia) on May 9; Perth (Australia) on July 3; with dates yet to be announced to Gassim (Saudi Arabia), Helsinki (Finland), Mombasa (Kenya) and Zanzibar (Tanzania).

Qatar Airways has orders worth over US$ 50 billion for more than 250 aircraft, including Boeing 787s, 777s, Airbus A350s, A380s and A320 Family of aircraft. The rapid expansion of Qatar Airways prompted the State of Qatar to embark on one of its biggest projects – the construction of a brand new international airport in Doha, which is scheduled to open in 2012.

Qatar Airways Group Corporate Communications Department
Tel: +974 44302072, Fax: +974 44302069
E-mail: qrmedia@qatarairways.com.qa
Website: www.qatarairways.com

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