British cycling star Chris Froome has announced that he will participate in the 2018 Giro d’Italia, which will start with 3 days in Israel. Froome’s announcement was part of the official unveiling of the route for the Giro this evening in Milan. The 21 stages of the race were outlined, including the ‘Big Start’ in Israel, beginning in Jerusalem on 4 May. The race, which usually ends in Milan, will this year end in Rome. As such, the 2018 Giro will carry with it a message of peace, coexistence and the power of sport to bring people together.

TEL AVIV, 29 November 2017 – British cycling star and current Tour de France champion, Chris Froome has confirmed that he will compete at the 2018 Giro d’Italia, which begins with 3 stages in Israel. In doing so, Froome will look to make history and become only the third cyclist ever to hold all 3 ‘Grand Tour’ titles at once – The Giro d’Italia, Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana.  
Froome’s announcement came as part of the official unveiling of the 21 stages of the 2018 Giro d’Italia this afternoon in Milan. 176 of the world’s top cyclists will begin the race with 3 stages in Israel, before a further 18 days of racing across Italy, culminating in a finish in Rome.
Commencing on May 4, the race will begin against the backdrop of Jerusalem’s Old City. Over the following two days, the competitors will ride from the North of Israel to the tip of the Red Sea, taking in breathtaking views from start to finish.
Competitors will continue the race over 18 stages in Italy, finishing on 27 May. The 2018 race will end in historic Rome, rather than its usual end point in Milan. Beginning in Jerusalem and ending in Rome, the 2018 Giro will carry a strong message of peace and coexistence, with its journey representing the ability of sport to build bridges between people, religions and nations.
Today’s announcement, which outlined the approximately 3,500 kilometre route, was broadcast across the world and was attended by past Giro d’Italia winners Vincenzo Nibali, Alberto Contador and 2017 champion Tom Dumoulin.
Honorary President of ‘Big Start Israel’ Sylvan Adams, who is the driving force behind the development of Israeli cycling and bringing the Giro to Israel, said: “The Giro d’Italia has 100 years of tradition. But the 101st edition in May 2018 will make history, as it begins in Israel, the first time that a Grand Tour will race outside of Europe. Tracing a path, both physical and symbolic, from Jerusalem to Rome, next year’s Giro will exemplify brotherhood between cultures and religions, expressing peace and coexistence through the universal language of sportsmanship.

“The ‘Big Start’ in Israel will see the world’s very best cyclists competing not only against the backdrop of Jerusalem’s ancient streets and Tel Aviv’s inviting beaches, but also within Jewish, Muslim and Christian mixed neighbourhoods and communities living peacefully side by side, the reality that we experience in Israel in our daily lives.”
The ‘Big Start’ in Israel will be the first time that any of cycling’s 3 ‘Grand Tour’ races – The Giro d’Italia, the Tour de France and the Vuelta a Espana – has been held outside Europe. The ‘Big Start’ will comprise 3 stages of the Giro d’Italia:
·         Day One will see riders begin the race against the backdrop of Jerusalem’s iconic Old City on a 10km time-trial tour of the city.
·         Day Two will begin in Haifa, then passing through historic Acre and Caesarea, before riders head to the finish line on Tel Aviv’s beachside promenade, totalling 167km.
·         Day Three begins in Beer Sheva and takes in southern Israel’s most dramatic scenery including the breathtaking Ramon Crater, finishing at the Red Sea resort of Eilat, totalling 229km.
The ‘Big Start’ of the 2018 Giro d’Italia is unprecedented in size, as a logistical event in Israel. It is expected to attract thousands of tourists, while hundreds of millions of viewers worldwide will follow the three days of live broadcasts from Israel.