Pro cyclists to race in Stevenage Old Town for 2017 Tour Series finale after having highest spectator turnout last year
- Credit: Archant
Pro cyclists will be returning to the streets of Stevenage in May, as organisers today revealed that the Old Town will host the final round of the 2017 Tour Series.
Stevenage High Street hosted a leg of the 2016 Tour Series in June – with the fast 1.1 kilometre circuit pulling in the biggest crowds of the competition.
On the back of that success – which also included the highest TV figures for the highlights show on ITV4 – the town has the honour of watching cyclists compete in 2017 Tour Series finale which takes place on Monday, May 29 – the spring bank holiday.
It will be the third consecutive year that Stevenage has hosted a pro cycling event, after the Women’s Tour came to the town in 2015.
For 2017, three weeks of competition for Britain’s fastest men and women’s teams at nine UK venues will build towards the final races in Stevenage, with riders racing around the same course as in 2016.
In addition to the men and women’s circuit races, the town will also host a team time trial event for the 13 women’s teams – who will compete to be the fastest over two laps of the Old Town circuit.
Starting in the High Street, riders will turn right into Basils Road and then right again onto Church Road.
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After the long fast straight of Church Road, cyclists will turn right onto Pound Avenue before the final corner taking the back onto the High Street for the sprint to the line. Riders will complete multiple laps of the 1.1km circuit during the races.
Earlier today, pro cyclists Lucy Harper of Team OnForm and Rob Ormond of Morvélo Basso joined dignitaries from Stevenage Borough Council, and Hertfordshire County Council, who are supporting the event, to officially launch the event in Stevenage High Street.
Councillor Richard Henry, executive member for children, young people and leisure at Stevenage Borough Council, said: “One of the stand-out moments of 2016 was watching the exhilarating Tour Series on a glorious June day in the Old Town. Stevenage had the highest spectator turnout and television viewing figures for the whole series so I’m thrilled that the Tour Series is coming back to the Old Town on Whitsun Bank Holiday Monday for the final round of this year’s competition.
“Stevenage has a rich sporting heritage so I’m hoping The Tour Series will inspire people from across the town to get back on their bikes and get in the mood for the Stevenage Cycling Festival, which runs from Easter to October.”
Councillor David Andrews, Hertfordshire County Council’s cycling champion, added: “The success of Team GB in the last two Olympics coupled with the recent staging of major cycling events in Hertfordshire has meant that the interest in cycling has never been greater.
“We are delighted that Stevenage will be hosting the final round of the 2017 Tour Series and we are sure that it will help promote the popularity of cycling and inspire more people of all ages to take to the roads with their bikes.”
There will be 10 men’s teams – headlined by defending champions JLT Condor, and including ONE Pro Cycling, who return to The Tour Series after a year away will – racing in Stevenage.
And among the 13 women’s teams who will be competing in 2017 are the Drops team, who won last year’s Stevenage event with Alice Barnes, and Team WNT – who boast British Cycling track stars Katie Archibald and Emily Kay.
Further details of the Stevenage event, including the full timetable for Monday, May 29, will be published in the coming weeks.
Highlights of every round of The Tour Series will be shown on ITV4, with programmes also be available on demand via the ITV Hub.
You can follow The Tour Series on Twitter @TourSeries #tourseries or Facebook, and find out more via the official website at www.tourseries.co.uk.