UAE Tour adds second summit finish at Jebel Hafeet

The UAE Tour will visit the summit finish of Jebel Hafeet twice this year after organisers RCS Sport were forced to revamp the race route due to roadworks in the Gulf country.

Stage 3, which was previously slated to conclude with an uphill finish at Rafisa Dam, will now see the peloton take on the 10.8km climb, which has been a decisive point of the race in each of the past two editions. The race will return two days later with a similarly flat route before the climb.

Meanwhile, stages 1, 2 and 4 have also been subject to major changes. The race  start moves from Zebeel Park to the artificial archipelago of Palm Jumeirah in Dubai, while stage 2 will get underway in Hatta rather than Palm Jumeirah.

Stage 4, on the other hand, retains its finish at Dubai City Walk, but will see its start shift across Dubai from the Dubai Design District to Zabeel Park. Stages 5, 6 and 7 remain as they were presented in January.

The alterations mean that the race won't visit the northern Emirates of Sharjah, Ajman or Umm-al-Quwan, nor the northern parts of Ras al-Khaimah and Fujairah, each of which were previously included in the route. Instead, the action will largely be focused around the southern Emirates of Dubai and Abu Dhabi, aside from stage 2 to Hatta Dam.

Two summit finishes at Jebel Hafeet mean that the 2020 race equals the numbers of mountains visited by last year's edition, where the climb of Jebel Jais near the Oman border in the north also featured.

The 2019 UAE Tour was won by Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma). His team took victory in the opening time trial and the Slovenian consolidated his lead with a win on Jebel Jais. Alejandro Valverde (Movistar), who finished second overall last year and won the inaugural edition in 2018, won at Jebel Hafeet in both years. 

Esteban Chaves, Tanel Kangert and Rui Costa won atop the mountain during the race's previous guise as the Abu Dhabi Tour.

Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana winner Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) will continue his sophomore season at this year's race. Valverde, Mark Cavendish (Bahrain-McLaren), Rohan Dennis (Team Ineos), Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott), Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) and Sam Bennett (Deceuninck-QuickStep) are among the other big names set to ride the race, which runs from February 23-29.

Cyclingnews will have coverage from the UAE Tour, along with news, race reports, photos, podcasts and race highlights. The race is the second WorldTour stage race of the season, following on from the 2020 Tour Down Under. 

Here we also share how to live stream the Tour Colombia 2.1, no matter your location, with ExpressVPN

2020 UAE Tour

Stage 1: The Pointe Palm Jumeirah - Dubai Silicon Oasis, 148km

Stage 2: Hatta - Hatta Dam, 168km

Stage 3: Al Qudra Cycle Track - Jebel Hafeet, 184km

Stage 4: Zabeel Park - Dubai City Walk, 173km

Stage 5: Al Ain - Jebel Hafeet, 162km

Stage 6: Al Ruwais - Al Mirfa, 158km

Stage 7: Al Maryah Island - Abu Dhabi Breakwater, 127km

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Daniel Ostanek
Production editor

Daniel Ostanek is production editor at Cyclingnews, having joined in 2017 as a freelance contributor and later being hired as staff writer. Prior to joining the team, he had written for most major publications in the cycling world, including CyclingWeekly, Rouleur, and CyclingTips.


Daniel has reported from the world's top races, including the Tour de France and the spring Classics, and has interviewed many of the sport's biggest stars, including Wout van Aert, Remco Evenepoel, Demi Vollering, and Anna van der Breggen.


As well as original reporting, news and feature writing, and production work, Daniel also runs The Leadout newsletter and oversees How to Watch guides throughout the season. His favourite races are Strade Bianche and the Volta a Portugal, and he rides a Colnago C40.