2017-09-27 / Mideast

Israel to host prestigious race

Stressing the chance to show off Israel to the world, Israeli officials joined with their Italian counterparts in announcing that three stages of the prestigious Giro d’Italia cycling race will be held in the country, starting in Jerusalem.

It will mark the first time that any leg of cycling’s Grand Tour races—the Giro, the Tour de France and the Spanish Vuelta—will take place outside of Europe, and just the 12th time the Giro had gone outside of Italy in its 101-year history.

Israeli officials said the race would be the biggest sporting event ever held in their country and touted it as an opportunity to showcase the Jewish state—and its capital— to the world.

“Hundreds of millions of viewers around the globe will watch as the world’s best cyclists ride alongside the walls of Jerusalem’s ancient Old City and our other historic sites,” Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat said at the hotel gathering. “Our message to the world is clear: Jerusalem is open to all.” (JTA)

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