Giro d'Italia 2014 to begin with three days of Irish action
Next year's Giro d'Italia will begin in Belfast as part of three days of action on both sides of the Irish border.
The cross-border start to one of cycling's three Grand Tour events will be held over three stages taking place from 10-12 May.
The stages will involve routes taking in Belfast, Armagh and Dublin.
Estimates suggest a figure of around £4m will be required to bring the event to Ireland but the commercial return could be in the region of £10m.
Ireland's Stephen Roche, who won the 1987 Giro shortly before winning the same year's Tour de France, said it was a "major coup".
"Maybe it was a dream initially, but it was a realistic dream," added Roche, 53.