Yorkshire ready to get back on its bike

Excellent news for God's Own County today with the announcement of the route for the inaugural Tour de Yorkshire.

Starting in Bridlington on Friday 1 May, the three-day event will see 16 eight-rider teams visit some of Yorkshire's finest landmarks and tackle many of its toughest climbs before reaching the finish line in Roundhay Park in Leeds on the Sunday afternoon.

The new venture allows Welcome to Yorkshire and Tour de France promoter Amaury Sport Organisation to renew their hugely successful partnership of last year.  This delivered the most memorable Grand Départ in Tour de France history, gracing the streets of Leeds, Harrogate, York, Sheffield and many points in between over a July weekend which shall never be forgotten in these parts.         

And alongside the feelgood factor felt by the millions of people who lined the route, tangible benefits were reaped with organisers estimating that an additional £102 million was generated for the Yorkshire economy.

Needless to say, Welcome to Yorkshire Chief Executive "Sir" Gary Verity (pictured below with the specially-commissioned race leader's jersey) is rightly and characteristically enthused.   

“Before the Grand Départ had even finished people all across Yorkshire were asking when we can have more cycling!" said Yorkshire's unofficial First Citizen.  "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. And 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.”

So, another hugely exciting sporting event to look forward to in what is already shaping up to be a classic sporting year. And it's happening right here.