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Corsica start confirmed for Tour’s centenary

Tour de France officials confirmed Thursday that the centenary edition of the French race will begin on Corsica in 2013.

The Mediterranean island is the only French region that’s never played host to a stage of the Tour, but all that’s set to change in what should be a spectacular kick off to the 100th edition of the grande boucle.

Officials will reveal details of the opening stages of the 2013 Tour in a press conference set for December 6 in Ajaccio.

Corsica offers a tremendous backdrop for the Tour, with narrow roads, stunning coastlines and high mountains. Details are sketchy, but there should be at least two stages, if not three, on the island before a transfer to mainland France.

Since 2010, Corsica has played host to the two-day, three-stage Criterium International, a race dubbed the mini-Tour de France, also organized by ASO.

The 2012 Tour is set to start in Liege, Belgium, running from June 30 to July 22.