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Florence gives up on 2013 world championship bid

Mark Cavendish (Columbia-HTC) wins a 2009 Giro d'Italia stage finishing in Florence.

Mark Cavendish (Columbia-HTC) wins a 2009 Giro d'Italia stage finishing in Florence. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

A year after applying as a candidate to host the 2013 UCI Road World Championships, the city of Florence, Italy, gave up its bid.

"We give up with regret," said Gabriele Sola in a statement on behalf of the bidding committee. "We're conscious that we paved the way to a project in which we strongly believed and for which we worked with dedication and enthusiasm. After the proposal of the candidacy, there were a lot of contacts with UCI and local authorities but, in the mean time, the dynamics were strange to us... . We give the way to others."

The bid was initially presented by Eugenio Giani, the sport councillor of the town of Florence. Others on the supporting committee included Italian National Team Manager Alfredo Martini; ex-General Director of the "Varese 2008" campaign Gabriele Sola; cyclist Michele Bartoli; Battista Cailotto - a member of the organizing committee during the last three editions of cycling World Championships in Italy; business consultant Omar Bechini; and Florentine architect Daniele Del Cucina.

Another Italian city Genova has already stated its intention to re-bid for the 2013 worlds. In early December, the Belgian town of Hooglede-Gits reiterated its desire to host worlds in 2013 or 2014. Finally, Ponferrada, in northwestern Spain, received the endorsement of its national federation for its 2013 bid.

From 2012 onwards, the World road Championships will feature an expanded programme that will include a team time trial and the incorporation of the Junior World Championships.

The next UCI road World Championships, in 2010, will take place in Geelong, Australia, for the elites and in Offida, Italy for the juniors.  2011 takes elite racers to Copenhagen, Denmark, for worlds, and in 2012, racers will travel to Limberg in The Netherlands.

Road worlds were last held in Italy in Varese in 2008.  In November, Bergamo, Italy, said it would bid to be the host city of the 2015 World Championships.