His Highness Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, member of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Office, today greeted cyclists as they started stage two of the UAE Tour from Abu Dhabi’s main cycling hub, Hudayriyat Island.
The seven-stage UAE Tour, organised by Abu Dhabi Sports Council, is the only World Tour race in the Middle East. It will pass through five emirates before culminating at Jebel Hafeet in Al Ain on 26 February.
The UAE Tour is one of a growing number of world-class cycling events taking place in Abu Dhabi, including the 2022 and 2024 UCI Urban Cycling World Championships, and the 2028 UCI Gran Fondo World Championships.
Also greeting the cyclists were His Excellency Dr. Mugheer Khamis Al Khaili, Chairman of the Department of Community Development (DCD), His Excellency Saif Saeed Ghobash, Secretary-General of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, His Excellency Hamad Ali Al Dhaheri, Undersecretary of DCD, and His Excellency Aref Hamad Al Awani, General Secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council.
In November, Abu Dhabi was awarded ‘Bike City’ status by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) – the world governing body for cycling – in recognition of the emirate’s long-standing commitment to the UCI’s Cycling for All strategy, as well as its efforts to promote cycling as a healthy activity, as a more sustainable means of transport, and as a competitive sport for amateurs and professionals.
Coinciding with the announcement of the Bike City label, in November His Highness Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed launched Bike Abu Dhabi, a new enabling platform designed to advance the development of a vibrant cycling community across the emirate and foster links between three critical elements for cycling growth: mobility, health and leisure, and sport.
Under Bike Abu Dhabi, the emirate is seeing significant infrastructure enhancements, including an extension of the emirate’s 300km cycling network to more than 1,000km. The network expansion includes the 109km Abu Dhabi Loop, a segregated cycle way linking key destinations across the city.
Plans are also in place to build Velodrome Hudayriyat, a 3,500 capacity arena for track racing that will provide further opportunities to host high-profile international and local cycling events. The 12,000 sqm development will further enhance Hudayriyat Island as the city’s main cycling hub.