With 100 days to go until it starts on 1 May, the route of the inaugural Tour de Yorkshire has been announced this morning in Bridlington.
The three-day race begins in the coastal town with a 174 kilometre stage to Scarborough that includes five categorised climbs - and as with the Tour de France, the names have been rendered into French. The last ascent of the day, the Cote du Robin Hood's Bay, comes around 30 kilometres from the finish and is 1.5 kilometres long with an average gradient of 10.3 per cent.
Stage 2, covering the same distance, runs from Selby to York and has just two categorised climbs, the second of those tackled around 100 kilometres from the finish, which looks certain to be a bunch sprint.
The third and final stage, on Sunday 3 May, is 167 kilometres in length and loops from Wakefield to Leeds, with six categorised climbs on the way. The profile shows there are also several uncategorised ascents on the day's itinerary, which should make for some explosive racing.
Stage 1 - Bridlington to Scarborough (174km)
Stage 2 - Selby to York (174km)
Stage 3 - Wakefield to Leeds (167km)
Tour de France race director Christian Prudhomme said; “After the grandest of Grand Départs of the Tour de France, we were keen to return to Yorkshire. With its stunning landscapes, iconic cities and tough climbs, Yorkshire offers all the ingredients needed for a great cycling race.
"The welcome we received in Yorkshire in July 2014 was simply spectacular and I am very much looking forward to returning there in May for the Tour de Yorkshire."
While Stage 3 of the Tour de Yorkshire tackles some of the route of the opening stage of last year's Tour de France in reverse, most of the new race takes place in areas that missed out on the Grand Depart.
The route was devised by Tour de France sports director Thierry Gouvenou, who said:“Yorkshire offers so much with its huge variety of landscapes.
"For this first edition we have three quite different stages, each with their own challenges and, seen as a whole, a very exciting addition to European racing.
"This first edition will suit a strong all-rounder rider. In the following years we will change the routes, taking in new places and offering something new each time."
The race will be accompanied by an elite women's cicuit race in York on the Saturday, as well as a sportive, The Tour de Yorkshire Ride, which will take place on Sunday 3 May on the sae route the pros will tackle later in the day.
Gary Verity, ehief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire said; “Before the Grand Départ had even finished people all across Yorkshire were asking when we can have more cycling!
"The Tour de Yorkshire will bring back many of the world’s top cycling teams and there will be an opportunity for ordinary people to ride the same roads on the same day in the sportive.
He added: "This is a free event to watch so there is an opportunity for everyone in the county to be part of Tour de Yorkshire in one way or another."
Pretty sure I read about this last Monday in the Grauniad, but I can't find the article now. Sorry.
It's good to listen to when you're having a ride too.
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