Mayor Boris Johnson and Transport for London (TfL) have teamed up with the organisers of the Tour of Britain cycle race to offer one lucky Cycle Fridays rider the chance to present a top professional cyclist with their winning jersey at this Saturday’s Tour of Britain final stage.
Everyone taking part in this week’s Cycle Friday rides will be automatically entered into the draw for the prize, which also includes a pair of tickets to the Tour of Britain’s VIP hospitality area at Victoria Embankment. Thousands of people are expected to turn out on Saturday to watch the race, which is finishing its eight-day UK tour in the Capital.
The 8.6 kilometre route (which the riders will complete ten times) will start and finish on Victoria Embankment, taking the riders along the banks of the Thames, through the City of London, and past Big Ben, Cleopatra’s Needle, Somerset House, and the Tower of London.
Cycle Fridays are a series of bike convoys led by experienced riders which guide novice commuter cyclists into central London each Friday. Those joining the rides are greeted by ride marshals and are given a basic bike check and relevant TfL cycle maps before getting on the road.
On Sunday, the day after the Tour of Britain stage, London’s weekend of cycling will continue with the Mayor of London’s Skyride. Tens of thousands of cyclists will enjoy traffic-free roads for the day, encouraging riders of all ages and abilities to get on their bikes with friends and family.
Kulveer Ranger, Transport Adviser to the Mayor of London, said: “Cycle Fridays have created a buzz with cyclists who had needed a helping hand to take up biking regularly. What better way to inspire these budding cyclists than to give them the chance to be a part of London's biggest ever weekend of cycling.
“The various events in the capital will help people discover the cleanest, greenest way of getting about, and will make a great conclusion to a fantastic summer of cycling."
David Brown, Managing Director of Surface Transport, said: “London is well on its way to becoming a cycling city. The number of cycle journeys made in London has more than doubled since 2000, and in the last year alone we’ve seen a nine per cent increase in cycle journeys on London’s major roads.
"Inspirational events such as the Tour of Britain really help to capture people’s imaginations, and play an important role in encouraging more people out on their bikes more often.”
This is the third time in four years that TfL has brought the Tour of Britain, the largest free sporting event in the country, to the capital. The race will also finish there in 2010 and 2011.
To find out where the nearest Cycle Fridays meeting point is to you, visit http://tflgov.uk/cycling