Cycling: Riders detour to mark Holocaust

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The Independent Online

Riders on the Tour of Poland paid their respects to the Holocaust victims of Auschwitz-Birkenau with a short ceremony outside the gates of the concentration camp yesterday.

Before the start of stage six of the race, the 175 riders slowly pedalled 12 km from the nearby town of Oswiecim to Auschwitz-Birkenau. One rider from each of the 34 countries represented in the race, including Tour of Poland leader Dan Martin of Ireland, laid a single white rose at the gate, before observing a minute's silence.

Poland is this year marking the 65th anniversary of the camp's liberation. "We all know what Auschwitz is, and to think about everything that could happen there makes your hair stand on end," said Oscar Pereiro, winner of the Tour de France in 2006.