Tour de Yorkshire reveals host sites

The Tour de France in the Yorkshire DalesOrganisers of the Tour de Yorkshire hope to build on the success of the Tour de France Grand Départ which took place in Yorkshire in July

The start and finish locations of the inaugural Tour de Yorkshire have been announced.

Bridlington, Leeds, Scarborough, Selby, Wakefield and York will all feature – but their exact place in the 2015 race remains under wraps.

The event takes place between 1 and 3 May and precise route details will be revealed on 21 January.

The three-day cycle race was announced in September and hopes to build on the success of the Tour de France.

‘Huge milestone’

The new event, which is approved by governing body the UCI, will be run by Welcome to Yorkshire and Amaury Sport Organisation, which operates the Tour de France.

It is hoped the event, which will be broadcast on television, will attract some of the world’s leading cyclists.

Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: “This is another huge milestone for Yorkshire as we position the county as the cycling heartland of Europe.

“This is the first ever Tour de Yorkshire, I am confident it will become a huge annual event and something that will raise Yorkshire’s profile year on year.”

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Analysis: Matt Slater, BBC Sport cycling reporter

Tour de Yorkshire map

As we discovered with the Tour de France, when you have a patch as big as Yorkshire, it is impossible to visit everybody on a bike in just a few days.

So while it is good to see the north-east coastline feature this time, there will be disappointment that Hull has missed out again, as has South Yorkshire.

But they have not been “snubbed”, they simply did not want to pay the £100,000 or so hosting fee the organisers were asking for, and need for an event with no ticket revenues.

It also does not mean Hull and South Yorkshire will see no racing: we only have the As and the Bs at the moment, not the bits in between.

For that we must wait until 21 January, although there is nothing to stop us all from playing “guess the route” in the meantime.

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Christian Prudhomme, director of the Tour de France, said: “I am delighted we are returning to Yorkshire where we saw the grandest ever Grand Départ for the Tour de France.

“It is clear the people of Yorkshire are passionate about cycling and we can’t wait to bring them this new race.”

An estimated three million people watched the Grand Départ over two days in Yorkshire, with the economic benefit to the region put at £102m.

A mass-participation “sportive” with several distances where people can ride the same route as the professionals will be held on 3 May.

Diana Johnson, Labour MP for Hull North, said: “I think people will be a little disappointed because of course we did not have [the Tour de France] this year either, but we’ve got a lot to look forward to in 2017 with City of Culture.

“There’s huge preparation going on for that so I guess our resources need to be concentrated on making sure its a wonderful success for the city.”

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-30574400#sa-ns_mchannel=rss&ns_source=PublicRSS20-sa

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