Kortrijk is set to become the new starting location for the venerable cycling classic Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne from 2024, despite the event retaining its traditional Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne name. The city has formalised this change through a three-year agreement that marks a significant shift for the race’s departure point.
The city’s authorities have articulated a strong commitment to supporting quality sports practice and intend to use targeted subsidies to reward sports associations or organisations of events that bring prestige. By acknowledging sports as both an ambassadorial function and a city marketing tool, Kortrijk aims to extend support to entities keen on hosting sporting events on its territory.
In line with this vision, the city has aligned with the Royal Sporting Club Kuurne to establish a collaborative agreement for hosting the start of the Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne race for the years 2024 to 2026. The detailed cooperation pact delineates the partnership between the city and the race organisation.
Kortrijk positions itself as a cycling city, not only providing public spaces focused on functional cycling but also hosting numerous local cycling events and the largest bike fair in Europe, Velofollies. With this strategic manoeuvre, Kortrijk adds another layer to its cycling portfolio, leveraging the kick-off of the spring classic to inspire more youngsters to embrace competitive cycling. The city also sees the Urban Cross take place on its streets and the women’s road race Konvert Kortrijk Koerse too.
Financially, Kortrijk has already been contributing to the Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne due to the race’s passage through the city and the aerial exposure it brings upon arrival. The city’s financial commitment is poised to increase progressively, from 75,000 euros in 2024 to 85,000 euros in 2025, culminating at 90,000 euros in 2026, reinforcing the city’s support and connection to the event.
The winner of the 2023 Kuurne Brussels Kuurne race was Tiesj Benoot.