La Méditerranéenne, previously known as Tour Méditerranéen, is a professional road bicycle racing event held in Spain, France and Italy, close to the Mediterranean Seaside. Run over four days, it holds a 2.1 rating on the UCI Europe Tour.
|English name||Mediterranean Tour|
|Local name(s)||Tour Méditerranéen (in French)|
|Competition||UCI Europe Tour|
|Organiser||Association Olympique Mediterranée|
|Race director||André Martres|
|First winner||Charles Rouxel (FRA)|
|Most wins||Gerrie Knetemann (NED) (3 wins)|
|Final winner||Andriy Hrivko (UKR)|
The event is part of a series of stage races being held in the south of France in February, alongside the Étoile de Bessèges, the Tour du Haut Var and the Tour La Provence. These early-season races are competed mainly by French teams and are considered preparations for Paris–Nice, the first European World Tour event in March.
The Tour Méditerranéen ("Tour of the Mediterranean Sea") was created by former Tour de France winner Lucien Aimar in 1974. The event was named Trophée Méditerranéen for its first four editions. Run in February, the five-day stage race was won by several eminent riders, including Eddy Merckx, Gianni Bugno, Tony Rominger, Laurent Jalabert and Paolo Bettini. Gerrie Knetemann holds the record with three victories.
In 2012 licensing problems between the organizers and the French Cycling Federation emerged, nearly spelling the cancellation of the event before a deal was ultimately reached. Financial difficulties led to the discontinuation of the race in 2015 after organizers failed to pay debts from the previous edition.
From 1974 until 2014 the race was held in the southern French region of Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, but also occasionally featured stages in Liguria, Italy. Traditionally, a summit finish on the Mont Faron in Toulon was staged every year. As from 2016, the re-invented La Méditerranéenne is contested over four days. The 2016 edition spanned three countries, starting with a team time trial in Banyoles, Spain, before heading into France for two stages close to the Mediterranean coast. The final stage started and finished in Bordighera, on the Italian riviera.
- "La Méditerranéenne - General Classification".
- "News shorts: New French stage race planned for February". Cycling News. Retrieved 22 February 2016.
- "New four-day race La Méditerranéenne reveals stage starts and finishes. Replacement for Tour Méditerranéen race will run from February 11–14". Cycling News. Retrieved 22 February 2016.
- "Race History". Cycling News. Retrieved 22 February 2016.
- "Tour Méditéranéen in peril".
- "Tour Méditerranéen will not take place in 2015". Cycling News. Retrieved 22 February 2016.
- "La Méditerranéenne 2016". Cycling News. Retrieved 22 February 2016.
- "La Mediterraneenne cancelled for 2017 - Cyclingnews.com".
- Official website (in French)