UAE Tour 2019 odds
Who wins UAE Tour 2019?
UAE Tour 2019
The inaugural UAE Tour is a professional cycling stage race on the UCI World Tour. The Tour is in its first official year, following the merging of the Abu Dhabi Tour and the Dubai Tour.
The Tour begins in Abu Dhabi on Sunday 24th February, ending in Dubai on Sunday 2nd March. The race features one mountain stage along with a number of flat stages. The new-look route takes the riders through all seven emirates, and consists of a team time-trial, along with three summit finishes and three sprint stages.
The 2018 version of the Dubai Tour was won by Elia Viviani (Team Deceuninck - Quick Step), while Alejandro Valverde (Team Movistar) took the title in the 2018 Abu Dhabi Tour.
The 2019 route
The UAE Tour 2019 begins with a 16 km team time-trial on Al Hudayriat Island, Abu Dhabi. Stage two remains in Abu Dhabi, taking the peloton from Yas Mall to Big Flag. Stage two is a flat stage, so expect a sprint finish.
Stage three is the last in Abu Dhabi, including a finale on Jebel Hafeet (10.8 km, 6.6% gradient) - which was the climb formerly included on the Abu Dhabi Tour. Stage four takes the riders over rolling hills from Al Ain to the Hatta Dam. A punchy 17% gradient awaits.
Stage five is likely to be back to the sprinters, finishing with a flat at Khor Fakkan. Stage six includes the Jais Mountains. Jebel Jais is 20 km and has an average gradient of 5%. The final stage wraps up the Tour with a flat parade stage in Dubai.
The inclusion of both flat and mountain stages means a wide variety of cyclists are drawn to the event as sprinters, like Mark Cavendish (Team Dimension Data), the rider with the most stage wins in Abu Dhabi, and Marcel Kittel (Team Katusha - Alpecin), the rider with the most stage wins in the Dubai Tour, have their eyes on stage wins, while climbers will be competing for the general classification jersey.
1 - Al Hudayriat Island, 16 km, TTT
2 - Yas Mall - Abu Dhabi, 184 km, flat
3 - Al Ain - Jebel Hafeet, 179 km, mountain
4 - Dubai - Hatta Dam, 205 km, hills
5 - Sharjah - Khor Fakkan, 181 km, flat
6 - Ajman - Jebel Jais, 180 km, mountain
7 - Dubai - Dubai, 145 km, flat
The 2019 favourites
The inaugural UAE Tour includes some big names. Chris Froome (Team Sky), Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb), Alejandro Valverde, Richie Porte (Team Trek - Segafredo), Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team), Rohan Dennis (Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team) and Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma) will be strong favourites. Others who will fancy their chances include Rui Costa (UAE-Team Emirates) and Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky).
Additionally, fast men like Marcel Kittel and Elia Viviani (Team Deceuninck - Quick Step) will be pushing hard for stage wins and an overall title.
The top names in the sprinting business will be fancying fast finishes in the three sprint stages. And for the rest of the field, they will be waiting for the mountain stage to launch their attack.