Inaugurated in 2002, the Tour of Qinghai Lake takes place between June and August every year in northwest China's Qinghai province, and passes regions of Qinghai and neighboring Gansu and Ningxia. Sanctioned by the UCI as a 2.HC race, it is also the top multi-stage road race in Asia with a prize money of more than one million U.S. dollars.
The Tour of Qinghai Lake or "Race in the Sky" is ranked among the top four competitions by the International Cycling Union (UCI) after the Tour de France, Giro d'Italia, and Vuelta a Espana.
The Tour of Qinghai Lake is literally a breathtaking experience, as cyclists have to ride over the long distances at high altitude with multiple uphill sections. It is a tough test of their stamina and ability, as well as willpower.
The route has been designed to include spectacular scenery as well as technical challenges. This includes long sweeping lakeside sections, hazard desert, plateau and prairies as well as the notorious mountain challenges. The route also passes through the rough Hexi Corridor, or the Gansu Corridor -- "throat and artery" of the Silk Road, plus the magnificent Ningxia Yellow River Golden Bank. It is no surprise the areas are a popular holiday destination that attracts many cycle touring groups and others from Europe and America.
Now in its 17th year, the 13- stage race will start in the Haidong city, Qinghai, and finish in Lanzhou, Gansu. The total distance of the route is 3,671 kilometers including 1,841 of race route and 1,830 of transfer, and features 154 riders from 22 professional teams representing 17 countries and regions, with the majority from overseas.
In addition, the market value and influence of Tour of Qinghai Lake have increased significantly. The 2018 event has attracted a record 19 corporate sponsors, including five from the Fortune Global 500. The biggest sponsor is the south China Guangdong-based Country Garden Holdings.
To learn more about the 2018 Tour of Qinghai Lake please visit the official website www.tdql.cn/ and follow the race on Facebook.