WARWICK Racecourse will be the official start of stage seven of one of the UK’s biggest and most prestigious international cycling events.
The Ovo Energy Tour of Britain is returning to the county for the second year in succession in September and will feature the only summit finish in the eight-stage race.
Once again it will be starting in Warwick, but instead of the town centre where the Ovo Energy Women’s Tour started from back in June, it will be kicking off from the Jockey Club-owned venue.
The space available at the racecourse will accommodate the larger set-up of the 20 men’s teams as well as the crowds of cycling fans who will arrive on Friday, 13th September for the 11am start.
Organisers of the event are likely to announce in the next few weeks that several of the star names from the recent Tour de France will be competing, with notable squads such as Team INEOS, Mitchelton Scott and Team Dimension Data all taking part.
Andre Klein, general manager at Warwick Racecourse, said: “We have seen some thrilling races at Warwick over the last year, but this one is something a little bit different – and certainly the longest!
“It’s very exciting to be welcoming the world’s leading cyclists to our racecourse and we’re expecting a packed grandstand to see the stage get under way.
“Having the Tour of Britain start here is the latest in a long line of sporting events that we have hosted and it is testament to the versatility of the racecourse.”
The Warwickshire stage of the Ovo Energy Tour of Britain will travel through all five districts and boroughs of the county for the first time – hosted by Warwickshire County Council with support from Warwick District Council, Stratford-on-Avon District Council, Rugby Borough Council and North Warwickshire Borough Council – and once again end in Burton Dassett Country Park.
The 186.5km route includes Warwick, Kenilworth, the University of Warwick, Meriden, Fillongley, Atherstone, Mancetter, Hartshill, Galley Common, Corley, Bedworth, Bulkington, Brinklow, Long Lawford, Bilton, Dunchurch, Kites Hardwick, Princethorpe, Ashorne, Wellesbourne, Ettington, Edgehill, Warmington, Temple Herdewyke, and three ascents of Burton Dassett on a 12km route.
The peloton will head up towards Meriden via Kenilworth and Berkswell, before travelling across North Warwickshire to Bedworth and Bulkington.
Riders will then head south towards Brinklow and the outskirts of Rugby, and back up to Princethorpe before racing along Fosse Way, down to Wellesbourne, and through Ettington and Edgehill.
Three Eisberg Sprints await competitors during the stage, the first at Berkswell, the second at Brinklow and the third at Pillerton Priors.
Competitors will then face three Skoda King of the Mountain challenges in a gruelling final stretch, including two full loops of Burton Dassett County Park before crossing the tour’s first-ever hill top finish line.
For more information, visit www.tourofbritain.co.uk/stages/stage-seven