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Leeds City Council says money spent on Tour de Yorkshire is worth it

City that hosted Grand Depart of this year's Tour de France aims to build on race's effect...

Leeds City Council says spending money on hosting next year’s inaugural Tour de Yorkshire will be worth it, saying they are keen to “make the most” of the momentum created by this year’s Grand Depart of the Tour de France.

Details of the first edition of the race, which will take place from 1-3 May, will be unveiled on 21 January, but the stage towns were revealed last week.

Those include York, whose council is spending £150,000 on the event, and Scarborough, which is investing £135,000, plus Bridlington, Selby, Leeds and Wakefield.

According to the Yorkshire Evening Post, including contributions from county councils in East Yorkshire and North Yorkshire, the total amount being spent on hosting the race will run into several hundred thousands of pounds.

That is on top of the £11 million that was spent by local authorities including those in York and Leeds, as well as North, South and West Yorkshire county councils, on staging the opening two days of the Tour de France in July.

Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire which is organising the race alongside ASO with the support of British Cycling, said that for local councils, putting on the new race would be “far less onerous than the Grand Depart.”

He added: “Although this isn’t the Tour de France and it is not a ‘grand tour’, this is still very significant.”

Leeds City Council’s executive member for leisure, Councillor Lucinda Yeadon, would not disclose how much it was spending, but said: “We have got to make the most of the Grand Depart and the economic benefit and the messages around getting people more active.”

Leeds hosted the build-up to the Grand Depart, including the team presentation, and was also the location of the start of Stage 1, which was won in Harrogate by Giant-Shimano’s Marcel Kittel.

Besides the men’s race, there will be a women’s race on Saturday 2 May and a sportive the following day that will include some of the roads used in the Tour de France.

Last week the city council in Sheffield, which hosted the finish of Stage 2 of July’s race, said it had decided not to bid to host the Tour de Yorkshire to give other places in the region the chance to experience top-class cycling.

Simon has been news editor at since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.

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