This week, five former cycling champions from Italy, including two Giro d’Italia two-time winners, are riding in Israel’s north, south and center. The cyclists — Maurizio Frondiest, Paolo Savoldelli, Andrea Tafi, Alessandro Ballan and Gilberto Simoni — are guests of Israel’s Tourism Ministry and are accompanied by a delegation of sports journalists.

Their cycling experiences are being documented to promote cycling tourism in Israel and the Giro d’Italia Big Start race set to take place May 4-6.

This morning, the cycling stars will hit the streets and bike paths of Tel Aviv accompanied by Tourism Ministry Director-General Amir Halevi and the Honorary President of ‘Big Start Israel Sylvan Adams, a philanthropist who holds the world cycling record for the over 50s.

In May, 176 of the world’s top cyclists will head to Israel to kick off the 2018 Giro d’Italia race in Jerusalem, marking the first time in 101 years that a Grand Tour will take place outside of Europe.

Tens of thousands of tourists and cycling enthusiasts are expected to arrive in Israel to experience the race’s festive atmosphere. The three-day race will take competitors through Israel’s unique landscapes, from the north of Israel to the tip of the Red Sea, before finishing three weeks later in Italy.