Cyclists should brace themselves for a grueling 2012 Tour of Rwanda after official confirmation that the distance has been increased by 89km. The total distance to be covered is 876km as opposed to last year's 787km.
Furthermore, this year's edition is spread over eight stages which will be preceded by a 3.8km prologue race within Kigali.
The tour, which is scheduled to run from November 18 to 25, has the seventh stage - from Rubavu to Kigali (156.5km) as the longest and the second stage - from Kigali to Muhanga (44.1km) as the shortest.
Over 90 cyclists from 15 teams will be on show in the eight-day event which is yet to be won by a Rwandan since its inclusion on the UCI Africa Tour calendar back in 2009. The teams in contention include Kenya, Ethiopia, African cycling champions Eritrea, Morocco, Algeria, Cameroon, Gabon, South Africa, Team Quebecor Garneau (Canada), Team Reine Blanche Rhone Alpes (France), Equipe Regionale de la Reunion (France), Team AVIA Flanders (Belgium), USA's SANOFI Team Type 1 and two Rwandan teams; Akagera and Karisimbi.
Last year, Reijen Kiel of Type1 SANOFI team won the tour after winning three stages.
Stages for the 2012 Tour of Rwanda
Stage 1: KIGALI - NYAGATARE
Stage 2: KIGALI- MUHANGA
Stage 3: MUHANGA - HUYE
Stage 4: HUYE - KARONGI
Stage 5: MUHANGA - MUSANZE
Stage 6: MUSANZE - RUBAVU
Stage 7: RUBAVU - KIGALI
Stage 8: KIGALI - KIGALI
- 1988: Celestin Ndengeyingoma (Rwanda)
- 1989: Omar Masumbuko (Rwanda)
- 1990: Faustin Mparabanyi (Rwanda)
- 2001: Bernard Nsengiyumva (Rwanda)
- 2002: Abraham Ruhumuriza (Rwanda)
- 2003: Abraham Ruhumuriza (Rwanda)
- 2004: Abraham Ruhumuriza (Rwanda)
- 2005: Abraham Ruhumuriza (Rwanda)
- 2006: Kamao (Kenya)
- 2007: Abraham Ruhumuriza (Rwanda)
- 2008: Adrien Niyonshuti (Rwanda)
Since its inclusion on the UCI calendar
- 2009: Adil Jelloul (Morocco)
- 2010: Daniel Teklehaimanot (Eritrea)
- 2011: Kiel Reijnen (USA)