Introduction

‘Utrecht’s Finest’ an international classic with style, history and ambition

With the passing of the years the sport of cycling changed. As a result, the Round could not compete anymore at the highest level. The importance of the Round did not decrease, but it became more and more a race which surfaced the top of the future talent. The character of the race with hills, dikes and wind ensured that only the best could win. A good example is a former Dutch champion with the professional rider Niki Terpstra, who won the Round in 2006.
Since 2010, the Tour has an international status under the auspices of the UCI category 1.2. This category is essential for cycling; young riders in these races can compete with other international talents.

Although the years the city of Utrecht has been the scene of the start and finish of the Round, the setting has changed regularly, ranging from the velodrome Galgenwaard to the Maliebaan, but the parcours has always visited the most beautiful parts of the province of Utrecht.

In addition to the elite competition of the Round also  youth competitions take place and sportive riders ride their own tour through the province.

That all being said, the title ‘Utrecht’s Finest‘ applies.

In 2015 it was decided to move to a two day race. Since that year a Team Time Trial is organised on Saturday in the beautiful area of Utrechtse Heuvelrug, about 25 km East of Utrecht. As a result of this step even stronger teams decided to participate in the race. For many of them the Team Time Trial is the ideal preparation for the World Championships.  As of 2018 the organisation steps back to the original classic race. The race will be part of the so called Holland Cup. (www.hollandcup.cc)

The importance

Sport

A 200 km classic with a selective course (hills and dikes) is very important for the development of young cycling talent. They get the chance to compete in a race with a classic distance with a strong field. This is essential in their development where hardness and competition at the highest level are important elements. The KNWU welcomed the organisation of competitions like the Ronde van Midden Nederland.

Tourism

The route of the Ronde van Midden Nederland covers large parts of the province of Utrecht. Racing and sportive riders, followers and make the public  acquainted in this way, with everything the province has on offer on landscape and culture.

The Utrecht Area is a large knowledge community and one of the most dynamic regions for that matter in Europe. It is a popular location for businesses because of the attractive living environment in which the supply of (width) sport also plays a role.

The ambition

The Stichting Wielerpromotie Midden Nederland wants to expand the Ronde van Midden Nederland as one of the leading events in the UCI Europe Tour. To obtain this position we aim the expansion to a multi-day event, making sure we will not lose the typical aspect of a classic, but add elements that make the race even more attractive for the teams.

Cycling Festival

With the Ronde van Midden Nederland history as a base, the foundation wants to establish a grand cycling festival in Utrecht. The last weekend of August should be a feast for all cyclists; racers, youth, touring riders and leisure cyclists.

Quality

The organisation has a big responsibility to participants and audience and therefore quality and safety are paramount. The province of Utrecht is a densely populated one with a lot of traffic which makes a perfect traffic plan and proper supervision of the activities a necessity.

The organisation is completely in the hands of volunteers who contribute with their background and experience ensuring this quality.

Durability

The foundation strives  next quality for durability. This concerns in addition to the stability and sustainability of the event, focus on the environment and surroundings. Wherever possible use is made of environmentally friendly materials and applications.

Milestones

  • 2015: Extension of the classic to two days: stage race and team time trial, youth competitions for status nationwide youth tournament.
  • 2018: Due to external circumstances the organisation stepped back to the original one day classic race. The race will be part of the so called Holland Cup and will get live coverage on local television.