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Tour Down Under to open World Tour until 2015

Updated: August 03, 2011, 20:45


ADELAIDE, Australia (AP) The Tour Down Under will remain the opening event on the World Tour for the next four years after the International Cycling Union extended the license of the Australian race.

The Premier of South Australia state, Mike Rann, announced Thursday that the six-day tour would remain part of the World Tour at least until 2015. The Australian stage race was the first non-European event to be added to the UCI ProTour in 2008 and was chosen by seven-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong for his international comeback in 2009.

Armstrong also rode in the Tour Down Under in 2010 and this year, making it his last event outside of the United States.

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