Klubi Cycling Tartu was founded by ex-pro rider Rene Mandri & cycling enthusiast Hannes Kirs in October 2017. The main goal was to develope U23 riders and help them enter world class teams.
Norman Vahtra was 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) for 2020-2021.
Cycling Tartu is working on popularizing cycling as sports in Baltic States & Finland too. The former Tour de France yellow jersey ('99) Jaan Kirsipuu is involved in the project and he enjoys to give his experience in cycling to younger riders.
The town of cyclists
Top level cyclists come from Tartu. In '70s we had our own real cycling superstar (behind Soviet curtins), Estonia's most legendary cyclist & Olympic Champion ('76 Montral) Aavo Pikkuus. In '80s Tartu had names like Riho Suun and Toomas Kirsipuu, the first guys to enter the proffessional cycling world joining 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 stage winner, 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).
Tartu has many bike paths and more kilometers are built each year. All this cycle roads can be covered on electrical bikes from the Smart Bike Share.
Each year since 2002 Klubi 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 called GP Tartu (UCI 1.1). 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 the shorter (56km) and in the longer distance ( 124km) on the last Sunday of May. There are also races for kids with 3000 participants a day before the main event since 1983. All events are organized by Klubi Tartu Maraton (www.tartumaraton.ee)
European Capital of Culture 2024
"ARTS OF SURVIVAL"
...is the leading theme of our Tartu 2024 bid books and our artistic concept.
"Arts of Survival" is meant to express the power of the arts in affecting Europe’s future in three larger areas of life: environmentally friendly culture with a focus on real human communication, strong communities and essential skills for living and, indeed, survival in the coming years.
With messages and actions that value the individual and with the help of our Southern Estonian partners, even a city the size of Tartu can stand out in 21st century Europe.
The three main themes where the Arts of Survival come to life are as follows: "Tartu with Earth: Ecology Before Economy", "Tartu with Humanity: Forward to the Roots", "Tartu with Europe: Greater Smaller Cities". Each of these programme lines consists a number of transversal, transnational and transgenerational projects which open up the "Arts of Survival" values.