West Bridgford has been chosen as the starting point for the penultimate – and longest – stage of the OVO Energy Tour of Britain cycle race.
The biggest free-to-attend sporting event returns to Nottinghamshire this year on Saturday 8 September starting in West Bridgford and ending in Mansfield.
The announcement comes on the back of last year’s successful event which attracted 210,000 supporters on the day – one of the biggest turn-outs across the eight stage race across the UK.
The race boosted the Nottinghamshire economy by more than £3.4m.
With a global TV audience of millions, once again the eyes of the world will be on Nottinghamshire when 120 of the world’s top cyclists race the longest stage which is approximately 223 km long (139 miles)
The route will take in key Nottinghamshire landmarks such as the new Sherwood Forest Visitor centre, Newstead Abbey, Clumber Park and Trent Bridge Cricket Ground. The race will travel through many town and villages in the south of the county as well as taking riders over the iconic Trent Bridge for the first time.
Councillor Kay Cutts, Leader of Nottinghamshire County Council said:
“We are absolutely delighted that the race will be returning to our great county on Saturday 8 September – and will take in every district, including the City area.
“Last year’s event really was a fantastic day and shows that Nottinghamshire has what it takes to host a sporting event of this scale.
“We hope even more residents and visitors will turn out in force to experience this fantastic event this year – and let’s hope the county reaps even bigger economic benefits”
Mick Bennett, Tour of Britain Race Director added:
“The turn-out for the Nottinghamshire stage last year really was incredible. The viewing figures for ITV4 show that Stage Four was popular with the audience at home too, with half a million people tuning in to watch the highlights– attracting the highest ratings of any of the other seven highlight shows.
“So we are delighted to be returning to Nottinghamshire as this year’s route makes it seem like a completely different county! We are taking in a lot of new areas, approaching a significant part of 2017’s route from the opposite direction as well as having hillier sections this time.”
The route will take in dozens of towns and villages including Ruddington, Cotgrave, Radcliffe-on-Trent, Southwell, Retford, Worksop and Hucknall.
Commenting on West Bridgford being chosen to host the start of the race, Councillor Simon Robinson, Leader of the Rushcliffe Borough Council said:
“We are absolutely delighted to welcome such a unique, prestigious event to the borough for the first time.
“We are proud of our heritage in sport and it’s fantastic we have been chosen as a host county and that so much of the stage will ride through Rushcliffe.”
Kate Allsop, Executive Mayor of Mansfield, said:
“We are very pleased and proud that Mansfield has been chosen as a host for the second year in a row – this time for the exciting finish.
“As it is on a Saturday, we hope this will enable even more people than last year to line the streets and provide a huge welcome for the cyclists as they make their way to the finish line.”
The economic impact report [PDF] commissioned by national Tour of Britain organisers showed that spend on food and drink was by far the biggest contributor to the local economy last time (almost £1.13m) followed by accommodation costs (£611k).
More than 39 per cent of those who turned out to watch the race had travelled from outside the county – therefore attracting around 81,000 visitors to Nottinghamshire.
Other figures shown in the report include:
- Average daily spend for day visitor was more than £27
- Overnight visitors spend more than £101 on average
- Almost two-thirds of spectators said the race had inspired them to cycle more
- Half of those attending came with their families.