TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The race track of an annual international cycling race and sports tourism event, Tour de Singkarak (TdS) 2018, has been extended to 1,267 km from 1,250 km in the previous year.
"The race track has been extended, but its stages have decreased," Ony Yulfian, head of the West Sumatra tourism office, said on Saturday.
This year, TdS comprises eight stages, from nine in 2017, because three districts?Mentawai, Padang Pariaman, and West Pasaman?will not participate in the event.
The 2018 TdS route covers 16 districts and cities.
Yulfian believed that the implementation of TdS this year will be better that that of the past years.
The TdS organizing committee rejected three teams from the Middle East because their qualifications did not meet those of TdS.
The first stage of TdS is Bukittinggi- Sijunjung stretching 140.5 km. The start from Bukittinggi will be on November 4, 2018.
The second stage on November 5 will start from Sawahlunto and end in Dharmasraya, covering a total distance of 204.1 km.
The third stage is Singkarak-Tanah Datar, stretching 150.4 km on November 6. The fourth stage is Padang-Agam (144 km). The fifth stage is Limapuluh Kota-Pasaman (170.5 km). The sixth stage is Solok-Payakumbuh (105 km) on November 9. The seventh stage is Padangpanjang- South Solok (194.4 km) on November 10.
The final stage is from South Pesisir to Pariaman, stretching 158 km, to be held on Sunday, November 11, 2018.
The world-class TdS event takes renowned international cyclists on an exciting tour across the picturesque West Sumatra countryside`s scenic landscapes comprising beaches, blue lakes, and numerous hairpin bends, as they climb up to the foot of the volcanoes.
Inspired by the 119-year-old Tour de France, the TdS was first organized as part of the recovery program following a powerful earthquake that had devastated West Sumatra in 2009 in a bid to boost the tourism industry through a sport-based promotional activity.