Indoor training platform Bkool is hosting a new virtual cycling stage race called the Citroën ë-Tour which allows riders to compete virtually against professional cyclists from the AG2R Citroën Team as well as stars from the video game live streaming platform Twitch, and it’s open to all riders thanks the platform’s free 30-day trial. All riders who complete a stage will also be entered into prize draws for a chance to win a Zycle smart trainer and AG2R Citroën Team jersey.
Bkool is the platform that mixes real video and 3D simulation that’s aimed at achieving the “maximum sensation of immersion and realism”.
The platform held the inaugural official virtual edition of the Giro d’Italia Virtual last Autumn and will continue to do so for the next two years. Now it has a new stage race for amateur riders that allows you to race against AG2R Citroën cyclists such as Felix Gall and Larry Warbasse, sports journalists like Siro López and Rubén Martín, as well as Twitch stars including Tresco, Spursito and KiwiCity.
Sessions are being broadcast live on Twitch and Instagram Live to get ready for the stages, featuring the cyclists of the AG2R Citroën Team along with the streamers and sports journalists named above - you can find the schedule here.
The Citroën ë-Tour consists of four stages from 14km to 25km and is set on the virtual streets of Spain and Portugal.
The first stage starts today near Zaragoza in Spain, with a virtual 22.7km long route that has an elevation gain of 479.9m.
On March 14, the race goes to Portugal with the route from Vila Real to Vila Pouca de Aguiar. This course is 22.8km long and has 277.9m of climbing.
Back in Spain, on March 21 the route will follow the Galician coastline, starting in Playa de Samil, continuing along the seashore in the city of Vigo and ending in Chapela, for a total of 14.5kms with just 105m of elevation gain.
On March 28, the ë-Tour will end, as is traditional in the Vuelta a España, in Madrid, with a stage of 14.8km and 268.8m of climbing.
Every rider who has participated and finished each stage will receive a digital jersey and if you finish in the top 10, this jersey features an exclusive design.
The winners of each category will receive a real Citroën AG2R Team jersey, a Zycle ZDrive smart trainer and the chance to meet and chat with the cyclists of the AG2R Citroën Team.
There will also be a draw for a physical Citroën AG2R Team jersey and a Zycle ZDrive smart trainer for each stage, with all riders who have competed that particular stage entered into the prize draw.
For the 10 best classified riders in each category, Bkool will also be giving away in a prize draw an exclusive two-day experience in Switzerland with the AG2R Citroën Team courtesy of BMC.
Bkool’s virtual Citröen Ë-Tour is open to any rider via the 30-day free trial which you can sign up to over here, and then the platform costs €9.99 (~£8.23) per month.
This is not the first official virtual cycling stage race that’s been open to all amateur riders. Most recently, FulGaz hosted the Virtual Santos Tour Down Under with six of the seven stages including segments from the real race the pros competed in.