Klubi Cycling Tartu was founded by ex-pro Rene Mandri & cycling enthusiast Hannes Kirs in october 2017. The main goal is to develope U23 riders and help them enter world class teams. Norman Vahtra is the first rider to achieve it, he scored 8 UCI 2nd category wins in 2019 and signed a 2 year deal with Israel Cycling Academy (World Tour in 2020). Cycling Tartu is also working on popularizing cycling as sports in Baltic States & Finland.
Klubi Cycling Tartu and Sports Club of Tartu University (TÜASK) started collaboration autumne 2018 for developing cycling in Tartu. Youngsters aged 6-18 practice cycling under the guidance of coaches Caspar Austa (Road & MTB) & Siim Lepik (BMX) in Tartu Universities Sports Club and U23 roadcyclists are developed in Cycling Tartu.
Top level cyclists come from Tartu. In '70s we had our own real cycling superstar (behind Soviet curtins), Estonias most legendary cyclist & Olympic Champion ('76 Montral) Aavo Pikkuus. In '80s we had names like Riho Suun and Toomas Kirsipuu, the first guys to enter the proffessional world (Kelme) at the end of the Soviet times. Erika Salumäe became double Olympic Champion in women sprint on the track ('88 Seoul and '92 Barcelona). Jaan Kirsipuu won more than 120 pro races in '90s & '00s including 4 stages of Tour de France and he was 7 days in yellow during Le Tour '99. Rene Mandri was 2nd in European U23 roadrace Championships (Valkenburg 2007), Alo Jakin got a silver medal in European Games RR (Minsk 2019) and Rait Ärm was 3rd in European U23 roadrace Championships ( Alkmaar 2019). Madis Mihkels won 2 Gold medals (RR &TT) in European Youth Olympics (Bakuu 2019). Roadie Allan Oras became European MTB marathon Champion in 2009. Grete Treier, Giro d'Italia Donne podium finisher on multiple stages, is also from Tartu. All of them are living in Tartu or training in a cycling club from Tartu. At the moment there are two riders from Tartu in World Tour teams- Norman Vahtra (Israel Cycling Academy) & Martin Laas (Bora Hansgrohe).
Each year since 2002 Tartu Maraton organizes the highest level UCI race in Baltics. Since 2013 it's a stagerace, Tour of Estonia (2.1) with it's famous last stage on the streets of Tartu. Previously it was UCI 1.1 GP Tartu. European Championsips in roadrace were held on the same circuit in 2015.
Since 1982 we have the biggest roadrace of our region for all cycling enthusiasts, Tartu Rattaralli. There are 4000 cyclists taking part in shorter distance (56km) and in the longer distance ( 124km) on the last Sunday of May. There are also races for kids (almost 3000 participants) a day before the main event since 1983. All events are organized by Klubi Tartu Maraton (www.tartumaraton.ee)
More about cycling & Tartu.
Madis Lepajõe was vice-president of European Cycling Union for 8 years and he was a member of UCI's commissaires commission after that. Madis was a longtime UCI commissaire and he was the second maire of Tartu at the moment he passed away in 2020.
There are 4 guys from Tartu working for World Tour team Bora Hansgrohe, better known as the team of Peter Sagan: kitchen truck driver Ard Kodanik and mechanics Risto Usin, Gerd Kodanik & Veiko Lopman.
Check these links for more information about cycling & Tartu:
Cycling Tartu has a fan corner at the heart of Lõunakeskus, the biggest shopping center in South-Estonia.
Come and visit us there too;)