Flanders wants the 'Grand Départ'

The Belgian region of Flanders is trying to become the host of a Tour de France start in 2010 or...

The Belgian region of Flanders is trying to become the host of a Tour de France start in 2010 or 2013, and Prime minister Yves Leterme has been in talks with Christian Prudhomme and Jean-Marie Leblanc of Tour de France organiser ASO.

"It's never to soon for that kind of candidacy," said Leterme, who also acknowledges the Tour can not start outside France every year. "Flanders is not alone," added Leblanc. "Utrecht, Rotterdam, Düsseldorf, Lugano, Monaco, Florence, Salzburg: they all want the 'Grand Départ'," he said.

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