Банкеръ Weekly



BGN130,000 at least will be necessary for this year's international bicycle race Tour round Bulgaria. The money has almost been ensured, but more funds are expected from sponsors and clients, demanding ads.The tour is dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the Bulgarian Cycling Union. The race (which will take part for the 52nd time) is one of the oldest on the Continent. Only Tour de France, Giro d'Italia, and the Belgian tour have a longer history.Bulgartabac Holding is the major sponsor of the race. About a dozen of smaller and bigger firms are also supporting the tour that will be held under the patronage of the National Assembly Chairman Ognyan Gerdjikov.The prize fund of BGN45,000 is in compliance with the requirements of the International Cycling Union (ICU) for this category of races. BGN2,000 has been earmarked for the winner and those who rank up to the 25th position in the finals will also get cash prizes. BGN700 will go to the first 25 in each of the eight laps. A number of firms will participate with their products and prizes in the Tour round Bulgaria, which is suitable for advertising. Climat Inkom, for example, will encourage the most audacious cyclists by granting five freezers. DSK Bank is also expected to give prizes. If there is anything disturbing, it is the fact that the participation of the State Agency for Youth and Sports and other sports structures is almost symbolical. Thus, the Bulgarian Olympic Committee will give just one cup, and the Sports Foundation is still silent. At the same time, it is clear to everyone that the success of the race depends to a large extent on the prize fund. The higher the awards, the better cyclists from abroad will be attracted.However, one thing is certain now: our traditional bicycle race, which was for the first time organized back in 1924, had won good reputation in at least three points - safety on roads, comfort at hotels, and diversity of the racing track.The tour will start on September 2 by a 74-km ride along Sofia's boulevards. The route goes from the capital city to Troyan, Gabrovo, Razgrad, Bourgas, Stara Zagora, Pavel Banya, and ends in Sofia again. However, there will be no serious heights and individual racing, measured by a a stop-watch. Teams from 13 countries are expected. Italy and Germany will be represented by two teams each. The novelty this year is that the fastest young cyclist in each stage will wear a special white T-shirt and will be awarded prizes after the intermediate finals.

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