"In addition to those routinely taking part in the event, several cyclists from East European countries have expressed their interest in participating in TdS. They never join the race before," Oni Yulfian, head of the West Sumatra tourism office, said here, Thursday.
The increase in the number of TdS participants is good for tourism promotion of West Sumatra, he added.
The West Sumatra provincial administration has proposed eight stages with a start from Bukittinggi for TdS.
A team has been formed to decide the routes of the TdS' stages.
The route will cover 16 districts and cities in West Sumatra, except for Mentawai, Padangpariaman, and West Pasaman. The three districts do not join the Tour due to budget constraint.
Deputy Governor of West Sumatra Nasrul Abit said TdS is a pride of the province, therefore it is consistently organized annually.
Last year, some 230 cyclists, grouped in 20 domestic and foreign cycling teams from 30 countries, participated in the sports tourism event.
Part of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) race series, the 2017 TdS involved 18 of the total 19 districts and cities of the province.
The 2017 TdS, themed "The Biggest Sport Tourism" and part of a tourism promotion initiative, was divided into nine stages, covering a total distance of 1,150 kilometers. (*)