Mount Fuji to form backdrop to Tokyo 2020 cycling road races
Japan’s iconic Mount Fuji will form the backdrop to the cycling road races held at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, after organisers unveiled the courses today.
They said: “Both road races will start in the Tokyo metropolitan area and route west through scenic landscapes towards the Mount Fuji region. The athletes will be put to the test with technically challenging courses with significant elevation gain.”
The routes will traverse three prefectures to the west of the capital – Kanagawa, Yamanashi and Shizuoka – each with its own distinctive landscape – finishing at the Fuji Speedway circuit in Shizuoka prefecture.
Tokyo 2020 said: “The final stretches of the course will feature challenging terrain where the outcome of the races may well be decided. Racing will finish with riders completing circuits in and around the Fuji Speedway, a motorsport race track located immediately below Mount Fuji. With each lap, spectators in the ample grandstand seating will see the race finale unfold – be it from a solo attack, small breakaway group or bunch sprint – and cheer the riders on as they make their final approach to the finish line and Olympic glory.”
Yoshiro Mori, president of Tokyo 2020, added: “During the second half of the course, cyclists will face tough terrain around Mt. Fuji, one of Japan’s most iconic landmarks. All in all, it will be an imposing course that will offer increasing excitement as it progresses with the elevation changes providing some of the most daunting challenges of recent games. We look forward to welcoming top athletes from around the world with an atmosphere that will be reminiscent of legendary European road races of the past. We will continue our preparations to successfully host them with just two years to go to the Tokyo 2020 Games.”
David Lappartient, president of the UCI, cycling’s world governing body, said: “An Olympic title is a major goal for any elite athlete, and the challenging and spectacular road race courses at Tokyo 2020 will provide a true test for the best cyclists in the world. Taking in iconic tourist attractions such as the Fuji Five Lakes region, the routes will also guarantee an exciting spectacle for fans lining the roadside and spectators worldwide watching the breath-taking images on television.”