The UCI and the organizing committee for the 2016 Olympics in Rio this week announced the routes for the road race and individual time trial, promising that each of the courses will provide a challenging arena for the athletes while showcasing the iconic backdrops of the Brazilian city.
Both the men's 256.4km and the women's 130.3km road courses will start and finish in Flamengo Park along the Atlantic Coastline. The 29.8km Grumari time trial course, which uses the Grumari Circuit of the road race that includes the 1.2km climb up Grumari Road, will see the race start and finish in Tim Maia Square along Pontal Beach. The women will complete one lap and the men will complete two laps of the circuit.
"The UCI has been working closely with the Rio 2016 Organising Committee and Mayor Paes on the road race and time trial courses for some time, and I am delighted that the routes have now been agreed," UCI President Brian Cookson said during the 127th session of the International Olympic Committee.
"The Road race mixes some of Rio de Janeiro’s most iconic backdrops such as Copacabana and Ipanema with some really testing sections such as the Grumari Circuit and the climb up to Canoas/Vista Chinesa, while the time trial course also includes the challenging topography of the area," Cookson said. "The steep climb up Grumari Road is sure to provide a unique test for time trial riders."
Rio de Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes said the eyes of the world will be on his city during the race.
"The route will also showcase areas of our great city that are less well known internationally such as Vista Chinesa," Paes said. "And I’m sure that the people of Rio de Janeiro will come out in huge numbers to cheer on riders right across this course."
After its start in Flamengo Park, the road race will take riders through Copacabana, Ipanema, Barra and Reserva Beach.
The Grumari circuit includes two climbs: Grumari, a narrow climb and descent in a forested area that averages 7 percent over 1.2km with a maximum gradient of 13 percent, and the Grota Funda climb that averages 4.5 percent over 2.1km with a maximum gradient of 6 percent. The circuit also includes a 2km cobblestone section.
The Canoas/Vista Chinesa Circuit (one for women and three for men) starts with Canoas climb continuing with Vista Chinesa climb over 8.9km uphill followed by a technical descent of 6km. Vista Chinesa is a monument located in Tijuca National Park. The course also includes a 20km flat section through Ipanema and Copacabana.