North Yorkshire will again play a prominent role in hosting the Tour de Yorkshire next year, as it was announced today that three of the six start and finish points for the international cycle race are in the county.
Harrogate, Scarborough and Tadcaster were named among the towns that will host either a start or finish of the race, which will be held from 28 to 30 April 2017. The other towns are Bradford, Bridlington and Fox Valley, Sheffield.
Full route details will be revealed in December, along with which locations will be a start and which a finish and the routes taken between them. It is expected that North Yorkshire will again host a significant amount of the routes, which will be different to those raced in 2015 and 2016.
The Tour de Yorkshire is run by Amaury Sport Organisation, which also owns the Tour de France, and Welcome to Yorkshire and supported by British Cycling.
The event is being supported by local authorities across Yorkshire. Following the success of the first two races in 2015 and this year, North Yorkshire County Council’s Executive recently agreed to allocate up to £180,000 a year to the race in 2017 and 2018. The money will go towards the hosting fee for the event and the associated costs linked to the council’s roles and responsibilities.
The County Council plays an important role in the funding, planning and delivery of the event, which has firmly established itself on the international cycling calendar and has been praised for its stage routes and terrain, as well as the huge roadside crowds. This year, 67 per cent of the race took place in North Yorkshire, including stage finishes in Settle and Scarborough.
The leader of North Yorkshire County Council, Councillor Carl Les, said:
Next year’s race will further cement Yorkshire’s place on the international cycling map, and it is important that North Yorkshire plays a key role, as we know these events have strengthened the county’s economy and given a huge boost for our tourism industries.
This race will benefit all the host towns and their surrounding areas, particularly giving Tadcaster a boost in its recovery from the devastating floods of last December. It will be a great opportunity to see pictures of the rebuilt Tadcaster Bridge in the television coverage.
This year’s Tour de Yorkshire saw more than two million spectators line the route. Spending was higher than the previous year; up 27.8 per cent year on year on accommodation and up 12.4 per cent items such as food and drink, souvenirs and transport.
The County Council has a duty to businesses in North Yorkshire to promote the county as a popular place for people to visit. The investment brings benefits that go beyond the race weekend.
Sir Gary Verity, Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said:
In just two years the Tour de Yorkshire has become one of the biggest and best races on the professional cycling calendar. Riders are overwhelmed by the support they receive on the roadside and the racing is among the most exciting you will see all season.
The third edition will continue that progression and the attention it receives will be greater than ever given that we have just succeeded in bringing the UCI Road World Championships to the county in 2019.
The world’s best cyclists will be using the 2017 Tour de Yorkshire as a first dress rehearsal for that and we’re planning a course that will challenge and impress them in equal measure.
I’m delighted the race will visit all four corners of the county and all six host towns will put on a brilliant show.
Christian Prudhomme, Director of the Tour de France at the A.S.O, said:
The Tour de Yorkshire has done itself proud in building a lasting and hugely-successful legacy on the back of the 2014 Grand Départ. The race is a true success story and we are thrilled to be working in partnership with such a great team at Welcome to Yorkshire. We’re looking forward to another fantastic edition in 2017.
County Council officers will work closely with Welcome to Yorkshire and the Amaury Sports Organisation on route design for next year’s race to ensure any disruption to the road network is minimised and the county is shown in its best light.