Peter Sagan returns for 2018 TDU

Cycling enthusiasts are revelling in confirmation of Slovakian cyclist Peter Sagan's decision to join next year's Santos Tour Down Under.

The announcement comes off the back of Sagan's unprecedented Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) World Road Championship hat-trick.

The talented cyclist will show off his rainbow jersey on the streets of South Australia for the second consecutive year, alongside his BORA-hansgrohe teammates.

His Barossa debut will feature on Tuesday, January 16 as part of the Stage 1, 145km route with a finish in Lyndoch, estimated at 2.41pm.

Stage 1 will also involve the Subaru King of the Mountain along Kersbrook Road, Humbug Scrub –  a 6.3km climb, at 4 percent gradient – while two sprints will take place at Williamstown Road, Cockatoo Valley, near the general store.

“I am excited to be starting the 2018 season with the rainbow stripes across my back again in Australia at the Santos Tour Down Under,” Sagan said.

The TDU is Sagan’s only Australian race this summer and he said “this iconic Australian race is the perfect start to the UCI World Tour season each year.

“It has it all, a challenging and tough course, warm weather and the passionate fans that cheer for us day in day out no matter what.

“We are always thankful for the fans,” he added.

This will mark the fifth occasion that a reigning World Champion has competed at the Santos Tour Down Under, cementing the event’s place on the international cycling calendar.

“It is important to get the season off to a good start with BORA-hansgrohe, and there is no better place to do this than South Australia at the TDU,” Sagan said.

Minister for Tourism Leon Bignell said “I know the fans will be thrilled to cheer Peter on in Adelaide”.

Mr Bignell explained the 2017 Santos Tour Down Under generated more than $56.5 million for the visitor economy with more than 840,000 spectators lining the streets.

“Next year when we celebrate the 20th edition of the TDU we want to see a million spectators at the race.

“So cycling fans, spread the word and start organising your friends and family to come with you to watch the best riders in the world do battle in and around Adelaide.”

The 2018 Santos Tour Down Under will be held from Saturday 13 January until Sunday 21 January.

For further event information visit www.tourdownunder.com.au.