London to host Women’s Tour for first time
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and Olympic Gold medallist Katie Archibald have announced this morning that London will host the final stage of The Women's Tour for the very first time on Sunday June 11.
The Women's Tour is the UK's biggest professional women's cycle race and a part of the UCI Women's World Tour. The final stage of the five-day event will be held in London and will use the same iconic circuit as last year’s Tour of Britain, which proved hugely popular with thousands of spectators and competitors alike.
The race will see some of the best riders in the world complete 14 laps of the 6km iconic circuit, starting and finishing on Regent Street and taking in Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square, the Strand and Whitehall. Katie Archibald, who won Gold in the Team Pursuit at the Rio Olympics, will be riding for Team WNT, one of the 17 world-class teams taking part in the event.
Today it was announced that the Women’s Tour will begin in Northamptonshire on Wednesday 7 June with subsequent stages visiting Warwickshire, Stoke-on-Trent and Chesterfield in Derbyshire, before the London finale on Sunday 11 June.
As well as the professional race there will be a day of cycling celebration to encourage more women and families to ride.
Before the race, a parade of female cyclists from community groups will demonstrate the diversity of cyclists in London, along with representatives of British Cycling’s HSBC UK Breeze programme. A festival site will host an array of cycling activity, with opportunities to get involved and learn about cycling in London. Visitors will be able to find out more about Santander Cycles and Transport for London’s Cycling Workplaces scheme, and free Cycle Skills sessions will be available for adults and children.
Breast Cancer Care, also joins the proceedings as Official Charity Partner of The Women’s Tour. This specialist support charity has 1000 places for women to cycle their Pink Ribbon Tour, completing 25km of the circuit whilst raising money for women facing breast cancer.
The event completes a weekend celebrating cycling in London, including the central London Criterium London Nocturne on Saturday night.
The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said:
“I’m really excited that the most prestigious women’s cycling race in the world is coming to the streets of central London for the first time.
“Londoners will be able to see their Olympic heroes and the world’s top riders competing up close, reviving the excitement we all felt during the Olympics. The race shows our continuing commitment to London hosting the very best sporting events in world.
“One of my key priorities is making cycling safer and easier for Londoners of all backgrounds, and I hope that having the Women’s Tour here will inspire thousands more Londoners to take up cycling as part of their everyday lives.”
Race Director Mick Bennett, said:
“We’re delighted to have the opportunity to bring the Women’s Tour into the city centre. Having the race finish in London on such an iconic circuit takes the event to another level providing the ultimate platform for women’s sport.”
Katie Archibald, said:
“The race being hosted by London is a fantastic opportunity for women’s cycling and shows how far the sport has grown over the past couple of years.
“I'm excited but also nervous about the opportunity to ride the Women's Tour since it's one of the most competitive stage races on the women's UCI calendar. Riding for Team WNT I hope to make an impact on the road scene after a change of focus from an enjoyable track season in 2016.”
Ben Plowden, Director of Surface Strategy and Planning at TfL, said: “The Tour of Britain has always been popular with Londoners, so it’s fantastic to be able to welcome the Women’s Tour for the first time. The event will encourage even more women to take up cycling and showcase London as a genuinely great place to ride for transport and leisure.”
Samia al Qadhi, Chief Executive of Breast Cancer Care, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to be the Official Charity Partner of the Women’s Tour.
“We only have 1000 places in the Pink Ribbon Tour. Register now to turn London pink and cycle 25km through the capital’s iconic streets to show solidarity to women affected by breast cancer.”
Fran Graham, Campaigns Coordinator at London Cycling Campaign, said: “It’s wonderful to welcome the Women’s Tour to London and to see the fantastic energy and enthusiasm it’s generating. London Cycling Campaign is working to translate this excitement into making it easier and safer for more women to take the healthy, less polluting option of cycling for their everyday, local journeys.”
Notes to editors
Created by SweetSpot Group in 2014, The Women’s Tour is the UK’s first ever international stage-race for women, bringing the world’s top riders to compete over five days in Great Britain as a part of the UCI Women’s WorldTour.
The three editions to date, won by Marianne Vos in 2014, Lisa Brennauer in 2015 and Lizzie Armitstead in 2016, have seen hundreds of thousands of spectators turn out at the roadside with many more around the UK watching the TV highlights on ITV4.
More information about the race and women’s cycling in London is available on the TfL website - https://tfl.gov.uk/status-updates/major-works-and-events/weekend-events-10-11-june-2017?cid=womens-tour
About Breast Cancer Care
To register for the Pink Ribbon Tour visit: www.breastcancercare.org.uk/pinkribbontour
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