Teams ready for 20th Tour du Faso challenge

The Tour du Faso turns 20 this year, and will be run between October 25 and November 5 in the African country of Burkina Faso. Organised by Tour de France owners ASO, the race is aimed at improving the level of cycling in Africa. The 20th edition will see 12 African teams, a record for the event, taking part. The Burkina supremacy of the last two years with Abdul Wahab Sawadogo's win in 2004 and Jérémie Ouedraogo's in 2005 could well be challenged by another African nation.

The Egyptians, winners of the 1999 edition will be back in Ouagadougou, while the riders from Cameroon and Angola will be hoping to continue their progression. Riders from Togo, Benin and Niger will join together inside a mixed team, and Zimbabwe, a newcomer on the race could surprise quite few.

The battle could also be won by the European teams having made the trip. The Belgians have ridden the Tour du Faso since 1996 and are often present on the final podium, aiming for the top step this time. Four French teams will also come with high expectations, and Japan, which will have a full team for the second time, will be chasing a stage win at the least.

Teams: Angola, Belgium, Brittany, Burkina Faso (A, B, C), Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Egypt, Gabon, Japan, Mali Sarthe, Senegal, Vélo Club de Roubaix, Yvelines, Zimbabwe, and a mixed team Benin-Niger-Togo.

The stages

Stage 1 - October 25: Ouagadougou – Manga, 100 km
Stage 2 - October 26: Manga - Pô – Tiébélé, 121 km, including 26 km on a dirt road
Stage 3 - October 27: Pô – Ouagadougou, 140 km
Stage 4 - October 28: Boussé – Ouahigouya, 129 km, including 1.7 km on a dirt road
Stage 5 - October 29: Yako – Ziniaré, 150 km including 11 km on a dirt road
Stage 6 - October 30: Kokologo – Boromo, 136 km
Rest Day - October 31
Stage 7 - November 1: Bobo-Dioulasso – Banfora, 85 km
Stage 8 - November 2: Criterium de Bobo-Dioulasso, 121 km: 12 x 10,1 km
Stage 9 - November 3: Boromo – Sabou – Koudougou, 115 km including 26.5 km on a dirt road
Stage 10 - November 4: Linoghin – Pouytenga, 96 km
Stage 11 - November 5: Loumbila – Ouagadougou, 88 km, including 12 x 4,5 on a circuit

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