June 18, 2012 (Saint-Lambert, QC) – On September 7 and 9, 2012, for the third year in a row, the very best racers on the planet will be attacking the courses in Old Québec and on Mount Royal at the Québec City and Montréal Grands Prix Cyclistes (GPCQM), the only two North American stops on the UCI WorldTour circuit. The 2011 races attracted more than 275,000 spectators and were broadcast to more than 75 countries, while generating more than $56 million in direct and indirect economic benefits for Québec.
A total of 168 competitors, representing the 18 ProTeams of the UCI WorldTour alongwith three Professional Continental squads invited by the race organizers, will race on the Québec City and Montréal courses in early September. Several ofthem will have taken part in the Giro d’Italia, the Tour de France and the Summer Olympic Games in London. Their identities will be made known in mid-August. The three Pro Continental teams are Team SpiderTech Powered by C10 (the Canadian team with the highest-calibre international licence), Team Europcar, and Cofidis.
The GPCQM organizers are pleased to welcome back their public partners for thisthird edition: the City of Québec, the City of Montréal, the Government of Canada and the Government of Québec. They are also extremely proud to announce that media giant Québecor has joined the family of major partners, which includes Kia and Transat, who have been on board since the events’ inception in 2010.
New for 2012
Following two successful stagings in 2010 and 2011, the organizers are making furtherefforts to enhance the race experience for the thousands of fans who will be attending the events, which stretch for more than 200 km on urban circuits in Québec City and Montréal. “Ensuring a great spectator experience is key to the longevity of a high-profile sports event like this one,” says GPCQM President Serge Arsenault, adding: “With that in mind, we’re expanding the experience for everyone who’ll be attending the races, through improved hospitality services as well as additional services for the general public. As well, our new partnership with Québecor means viewers in Québec will be able to enjoy large-scale TV coverage of the races, both live and tape-delayed, on TVA and TVA Sports networks.”
In Québec City, the Tribune Frontenac will be set up in the shadow of the storied Château Frontenac hotel, at thesummit of the demanding Côte de la Montagne and near the Flamme rouge, or red kite, marking the final kilometre of the course. This VIP area will give WorldTour cycling enthusiasts an up-close look at the riders at a point in the race where the adrenaline surge is at its peak, and the opportunity to follow the entire competition from start to finish on HD screens while enjoying a private terrasse, covered grandstand and food and refreshment services.
In Montréal, a specially outfitted area overlooking the racecourse on Avenue du Parc will offer winners of a contest on CKOI-FM an unmatched view of the Grand Prix Cycliste. And for the throngs of fans attending the Montréal event, food and refreshment zones will be set up this year in two of the most popular spots along the course: Parc Jeanne-Mance and the lookout on Montée Camillien-Houde, partway up Mount Royal.
For 2012, the GPCQM organizers are also launching their very first line of merchandise, in partnership with world-renowned Québec manufacturer Louis Garneau. The GPCQM/LG line of designer cycling apparel, accessories and other items will be on sale beginning in July at Vélo 2000 stores in Québec City,Saint-Hubert and Longueuil, as well as at Studio Cycle in Laval and Boisbriand. Spectators will also be able to buy GPCQM/LG items during the Grands Prix Cyclistes, at the many souvenir boutiques set up along the racecourses.
The Challenge Sprint Pro
The world premiere edition of this innovative event, created by the GPCQM organizers, took place last year and was enthusiastically received by the professional teams, each of which voluntarily entered one racer. This spectacular sprintevent, involving elimination heats of three and four riders over a one-kilometre distance, will be back on September 6, and is expected to once again feature competitors from every professional team entered in the Québec City GPC. To round out the field of 24 starters, the 21 professional cyclists will be joined by three Canadian sprinters who will have qualified during the Canadian Road Championships, being held June 21 to 24 at Lac-Mégantic, Québec.
Renewal of the GPC licence from 2014 through 2017
Last Friday, the Québec City and Montréal Grands Prix Cyclistes organization had the privilege of submitting to the UCI Professional Cycling Council its application to renew its UCI WorldTour licence, accompanied by the organizers of the Vuelta Ciclista al Pais Vasco, the Clásica Ciclista San Sebastián, the Critérium du Dauphiné and the Tour of Hangzhou.
Les Grands Prix Cyclistes Québec – Montréal
In 2009, the Grands Prix Cyclistes de Québec-Montréal (GPCQM) organization was granted the first two UCI WorldTour licences for races in North America. The organization has been responsible for planning and putting on these world-class cycling races in Québec City and Montréal since 2010. Please visit the website www.gpcqm.ca for more details on these races at the premier level of world cycling. The GPCQM organization would like to highlight the contribution of the following partners: the Government of Canada, the Government of Québec, the City of Québec, the City of Montréal, Tourisme Montréal, Québecor, KIA and Air Transat.