Switzerland's biggest cycling race, the Tour de Suisse has got underway at the Europapark funfair in Rust, Germany. Tuesday's individual time trial marks the first ever start on foreign soil for the prestigious sporting event.This content was published on June 19, 2001 - 14:32
Post Swiss team rider Martin Elmiger was the first cyclist to embark on the 7.9 kilometre race against the clock, which is meant to give sprinters a chance to show off their skills rather than have any major influence on the final standings.
Switzerland's Oscar Camenzind will be keen, though, to make an early impression on the race, as he looks to defend the title which he won last year. The rider from canton Schwyz is due to be the last cyclist in action on Tuesday.
The riders will return to regular pack racing on Wednesday when the Tour makes its belated entry into Switzerland, with a 179 kilometre stage from Rust to Basel.
Over the ten days of the Tour, the cyclists are set to travel a total of 1,427 kilometres, including daunting climbs through the Gotthard and Nufenen passes and up to Crans-Montana.
swissinfo with agencies
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