Hindley, Froome, Thomas and Yates headline 2023 Santos Tour Down Under
Chris Froome (Israel Premier Tech), Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers) and Simon Yates (BikeExchange-Jayco) will kick-start their 2023 season down under from January 14 - 22
This will bring the number of Grand Tour winners taking part in in the 2023 race to four, after Australian Giro d’Italia champion Jai Hindley was announced last week.
The Santos Tour Down Under is the biggest cycling race in the southern hemisphere and the first race of the year on the UCI WorldTour calendar. As the greatest names in world cycling descend on Adelaide, battling it out through the picturesque regions, the state comes alive with a festival atmosphere like no other.
International racing is returning to South Australia, and the stages are set. The women’s race will be the first ever UCI Women’s WorldTour stage race in the southern hemisphere after being elevated to the top category of racing for 2023. Race director, Stuart O’Grady has created a race for the fans. Huge climbs, coastal sprints, street circuits will all be taken on by the world’s elite cyclists.
The race opens with the Schwalbe Classic, a one hour and one lap criterium on Saturday January 14, but it's not until the prologue on Tuesday January 17 that the WorldTour stage race begins. After that it moves onto five stages on the roads of South Australia, culminating with a climb heavy stage on January 22.
Across the prologue and five stages surrounding Adelaide the riders will cover 673km.
The stage race omits the decisive Willunga Hill finale, but adds new features to the mix, from a 5.5 kilometre prologue and a new summit finish in the Adelaide HIlls featuring the popular local climb of Mount Lofty.
Froome will be joined by a strong team which includes 2018 and 2019 Santos Tour Down Under winner Daryl Impey and 2022 Tour de France stage five winner, Simon Clarke.
Fellow Tour de France champion Thomas is set to lead a young INEOS Grenadiers line-up, with Australian Luke Plapp and British brothers Ethan and Leo Hayter among the team heading to Adelaide.
Thomas will enter the new season full of confidence, following a third-place finish at this year’s Tour de France as well as winning the Tour de Suisse.
Yates will have high hopes for the 2023 Santos Tour Down Under after a Stage 2 crash ended his ambitions in 2020.
The 2018 Vuelta a España champion from GreenEDGE Cycling will be joined by a largely Australian line-up including Luke Durbridge who won the Santos Festival of Cycling in 2021.
2023 Santos Tour Down Under Stages
January 14 - Schwalbe Classic, Adelaide, 1 hour + 1 lap of 1.35km Criterium
January 17 - efex Prologue, Adelaide, 5.5 km ITT
January 18 - Stage 1 | Tanunda - Tanunda 150.1 km
January 19 - Stage 2 | Brighton - Victor Harbor 156 km
January 20 - Stage 3 | Norwood - Campbelltown 118.5 km
January 21 - Stage 4 | Port Willunga - Willunga Township 135.3 km
January 22 - Stage 5 | Unley - Mount Lofty 114 km