2010 Tour prologue timed around World Cup game in South Africa
Dutch organisers look to avoid conflict with possible Dutch quarter-final game
The prologue of the 2010 Tour de France in Rotterdam is being scheduled around the fourth quarter-final game of the football World Cup tournament in Johannesburg, South Africa. The Netherlands may play in that game, and Netherlands race organisers wish to avoid a conflict.
The city of Rotterdam announced Monday that the prologue on Saturday, July 3, would start at 4:30 p.m., and run until approximately 8:00 p.m. The football game is scheduled to start at 8:30 p.m., Dutch time.
The prologue will run 8km through Rotterdam, the second-largest city in the Netherlands. Stage one the next day runs 224 km from Rotterdam to Brussels, starting at 11:50 a.m., with the official start being 20 minutes later at the Erasmus Bridge.
The anti-soccer cyclists I know are going to be awfully frustrated with this one. Ha. Good move by the organizers as the Dutch have an awfully good team this time around and have arguably the easiest 4 team group (Netherlands, Denmark, Japan and Cameroon). Right now Holland is posting as a 15-1 favorite for the win. Not too shabby since only 5 teams have more favorable odds at the moment.
Oh, did I mention that the National Sports Center is going to be owning a professional soccer team next year?
I am very, very, very excited.