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Dates set for Canadian ProTour events

The peloton passes by a marina during the season's final ProTour race.

The peloton passes by a marina during the season's final ProTour race. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

Following a meeting of the UCI ProTour Council (CUPT) in Mendrisio ahead of this week's road world championships, it's been decided that the two Canadian rounds of next year's ProTour will be held in September.

The Grand Prix in Québec and Montreal will be held on September 10 and 12 respectively, with the UCI outlining basic technical details of each event. The Montreal Cycling Grand Prix will be 200km with 2,800m of climbing, while the Québec course will cover 189km and throw 3,000m of climbing at riders.

The news is a boost for Canadian road cycling, which has struggled for high-profile events in recent years. Whilst the professional women's World Cup series visits the North American country, the ProTour hasn't done so since its inception in 2005.

Although the dates fall within those traditionally set for the third grand tour of the year, the Vuelta a España, it's likely that the Canadian races will form important preparation blocks for those riders competing in the road world championships, which will be held in Geelong, Australia, in 2010.

The closer proximity from Canada to the Australian continent in comparison to Europe will also be a factor.

The UCI also indicated that dates for the remainder of its 2010 ProTour events have been approved and details will be announced subsequent to the conclusion of the CUPT Management Committee meeting, with the timing of next year's Gent-Wevelgem being altered to March 28.

The CUPT also addressed the longer-term issue of accommodating ProTour licence requests in relation to race organisers inviting non-ProTour teams to their events.

Due to the higher number of requests made for ProTour licences - by the likes of Team Sky and Team RadioShack, among others - the CUPT has initiated discussions on how best to modify rules relating to participation rates for ProTour and non-ProTour squads at races for the 2011 season. It's not expected that any announcement on this issue will be made in the immediate future.

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