The 2014 Women's UCI Road Calendar

I'm sure the calendar is announced later normally, but I'm not complaining! We have some caveats that the calendar does tend to change over time, so what we see now isn't necessarily what will be actually raced, but here's some first-look analysis - new races, lost races, reappearances and upgrades. What do you think? Let's chat in the comments!

The Road World Cup

Go to the calendar page, select 2014, and select women's World Cup from the drop-down menu

The World Cup is back up to nine rounds for 2014 - starting with the four Spring Classic races:

and finishing at the GP de Plouay (30th August)

Sparkassen Giro is a race that's been around for a while, on and off the UCI calendar and now up to World Cup status.  It's a TOUGH race, often held in torrential rain - another one for the sprinters.  It's another race like Plouay, part of a festival of cycling, with races for everyone from tiny kids to the pros.  It's lovely to have a German World Cup back again - and it's interesting, the World Cup was weighted towards Classics riders, this will make the sprinters happy.

UPDATE! There are more changes to the World Cup, with more jerseys (including a Best Young Rider classification, and a shake-up to the points system.  There's a UCI video explaining it here:

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The rest of the calendar

Go to the calendar page, select 2014, and select Women Elite from the drop-down menu

New races

Tour Feminino San Luis, 2.2 14th-18th January, Argentina

Looks like it's a brand-new women's edition of the men's race

Ronde van Overijssel,1.1, 2nd May, Netherlands

The men's race has been going for 63 years, and now there's a women's race

The Women's Tour, 2.1, 7th-11th May, UK

The biggest new race is The Women's Tour, the new UK tour set up by Sweet Spot, who run the Tour of Britain and the Tour Series.  They're not allowed to call it the Women's Tour of Britain at the moment, because the ToB name is owned by British Cycling.  This race will run 7th-11th May, at 2.1 status, and it'll be in the East Midlands and East Anglia.  can't wait to see where it goes!

Trofee Maarten Wynants,1.2, 10th May, Belgium

A men's race has run for seven editions - now there's a women's race too!

BeNe Ladies Tour, 2.2 19th-20th July, Belgium

All I know is it's 2 days and the website will be here

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Existing Races given UCI status for 2014

These races have been running, but have stepped up for the new season

Gent-Wevelgem, 1.2, 30th March, Belgium

Winston Salem Cycling Classic, 1.2, 17th April, USA

Grand Prix de Plumelec-Morbihan Dames, 1.2, 31st May, France

This is part of the Coupe de France series

Auensteiner- Radsporttage, 2.2, 31st May-1st June, Germany

It was a national-level race in 2011, and didn't run this year and last year, but it's back, and bigger!

White Spot / Delta Road Race, 1.2, 6th June, Canada

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A lost race returned!

Ster Zeeuwsche Eilanden, 1.2, 6th-8th June, Netherlands

One of those races with great social media, it had to cancel this year after Rabobank pulled their funding, so I'm really glad it's back.  It's flat and windy, a really tough Dutch race in an extraordinary part of the world

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More Good news!

The Giro Rosa seems to be back to "Giro d'Italia Internazionale Femminile" but best yet, it's back to ten days!  And the Route de France is up to nine days - will it count as a Grand Tour this year?

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Lost races

Tour de Languedoc Roussillon, 2.2, France

No surprise here, this was a complete debacle this year, after cancelling with a few weeks to go last year, so I can't see much of the peloton trusting it if it ran again.

The Giro della Toscana, .HC, Italy

The organisers have lived up to their threat and pulled the Giro della Toscana, in retaliation for riders refusing to ride the final stage this year.  I hope this changes before the season starts - but ultimately, with both these races, if it's a choice between one less race, or a chaotic and dangerous one, it's better to keep the riders safe.  I hope this changes and it comes back stronger.

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Interesting news

This year a new category of ".HC" was introduced as the highest category of races, but it was a bit of a kiss of death, as the Exergy Tour was cancelled, Thüringen downgraded, and the Giro Toscana was chaotic, so I don't know what to think about it disappearing for 2014.  I do think there need to be more than 3 levels of women's races, but I don't think the UCI had really thought through what HC meant, beyond costing more and giving out more points.

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Weird decisions

UPDATE! As Civetta points out, the Golan races are still on the calendar for 2014...  The UCI is always optimistic about racing in Syria, but I can't see these happening.

UPDATE! As Karl Lima points out, it's a real shame that the European u23 and junior Championships clash with the Giro Donne.  It's a shame the young riders have to decide between the Euros and fighting for Best Young Rider at the biggest stage race of the year.

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UPDATE! if you want to see how the 2013 calendar changed, and how 2014 is different, I've got a post of facts, charts and stats!

It's likely there are lots of things I've missed, so please please tell me anything else that catches your eye.  As I say, all this could be subject to change over the coming year.

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