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Saboteurs who scattered tacks on route of 2013 event never caught

The route of this year’s edition of the Wiggle Etape Cymru sportive is to be changed following concerns raised by local people. Tacks were scattered on the route of last year’s event in an attempt to sabotage the closed-road event.

According to the Daily Post’s Gary Porter objectors claimed the event’s road closures last year left them stranded in their homes.

Last year, police described the tack-scattering incident as “Very disappointing.” As well as several riders suffering punctures, a safety motorcycle marshal had to stop.

Nick Rusling, CEO of event organisers Human Race, said the attack could have caused riders serious injury. “It’s not a sensible way of showing dissatisfaction towards the event,” he said.

A police investigation was launched, but the saboteurs were never found.

After talks between event organisers Human Race, residents and local councils, members of Denbighshire’s cabinet will meet on Tuesday to consider changes to the route for this year’s event on September 14 .

The changes will focus on providing ways for residents of the villages of Llandegla, Bryneglwys and Graigfechan to get in and out.

The 100-mile ride starts and finishes in Bangor-on-Dee and goes up the Horseshoe Pass, along the lower slopes of the Clwydian Hills and back down the Dee Valley.

The organisers have promised to notify all those likely to be affected and to appoint a part-time local engagement officer to promote the event and liaise with the communities.

Aside from the sabotage attempt, last year’s Etape Cymru was well-received. Human Race said the event attracted 1,700 riders and resulted in a total of about £500,000 being spent in the area.

Our official grumpy Northerner, John has been riding bikes for over 30 years since discovering as an uncoordinated teen that a sport could be fun if it didn't require you to catch a ball or get in the way of a hulking prop forward.

Road touring was followed by mountain biking and a career racing in the mud that was as brief as it was unsuccessful.

Somewhere along the line came the discovery that he could string a few words together, followed by the even more remarkable discovery that people were mug enough to pay for this rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work. He's pretty certain he's worked for even more bike publications than Mat Brett.

The inevitable 30-something MAMIL transition saw him shift to skinny tyres and these days he lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.