Scotland is bidding to host the 2017 Tour de France opening time trial.
Event Scotland, the national events agency of Scotland, reveals that hosting the time-trial stage of cycling’s most prestigious competition would cost approximately £5 million ($7.8 million US), but could generate £100 million to the Scottish economy. Paul Bush, chief executive of Event Scotland, said that they already had three meetings with the race organizers about a possible bid. Christian Prudhomme, the Tour director, is also considering bids from Japan, the United States and the Middle East.
Bush said that to bring the Grand Depart Tour de France to Scotland, which is one of the greatest sporting events every year, in 2017 would be a huge coup. Possible locations for the Grand Depart, the first part of the race, could take place on roads between Edinburgh and Glasgow.
In 2014, Glasgow will be hosting the Commonwealth Games and Gleneagles will also be having the Ryder Cup. The ambitious bid of Event Scotland indicates its eagerness to establish these global events by including cycling’s most prestigious race.
Every two to three years, the organizers of the Tour de France take the start of the event outside France. In 1974, 1994 and 2007, parts of the race took place in England. Ireland hosted a stage in 1988.