OVO Energy Tour of Britain route and Manchester finish announced

OVO Energy Tour of Britain route and Manchester finish announced

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Britain’s biggest professional cycle race, the OVO Energy Tour of Britain, will return to Manchester city centre for the first time in 15 years this September as Greater Manchester hosts the final stage of the eight day race with a route that takes in all ten of the city’s boroughs.

Beginning in George Square Glasgow on Saturday 7 September, the eight day race will take the world’s top teams and riders across a 1,250-kilometre route through the south of Scotland, England’s North East and North West and the Heart of England before the overall finale for the first time in Manchester on Saturday 14 September.

Across the eight stages riders will tackle uphill finishes at in Newcastle-upon-Tyne city centre, Kendal in Cumbria and Burton Dassett Country Park in Warwickshire.

“This year’s race is a quintessentially British affair, combining the short and sharp climbs we’re famed for with finishes for the world’s best sprinters and hopefully a few surprises along the way,” said Race Director Mick Bennett.

“But more than ever this year’s OVO Energy Tour of Britain route has been designed with spectators in mind. From visiting three iconic cities and including uphill finishes that are guaranteed to create drama to using finishing circuits, this year’s race will play a big role in helping Britain become a great cycling nation.”

Commenting on the announcement, British Cycling Chief Executive Julie Harrington said, “The OVO Energy Tour of Britain goes from strength to strength each year and has captured the hearts and minds of the nation to become a staple in the British sporting calendar. So of course, this year’s edition will be extra special to us as Greater Manchester will not only welcome the race for the first time in 15 years, but host the final stage of the race.

“We share with all our event partners a determination that these events should not only showcase the very best of cycling at the highest level but provide necessary inspiration for people across Great Britain to get out on their bikes.

“The start of this legacy will be felt most keenly in our great city just 24 hours later, as HSBC UK Let’s Ride, our big-city, closed road family cycling festival rides into Manchester on Sunday 15 September.”

Leading independent energy company OVO Energy will be title sponsors of the Tour of Britain for a third successive year, alongside their support for May’s Tour Series town and city centre races and June’s UCI Women’s WorldTour Women’s Tour stage race.

Tour of Britain

Stage One will take the race from Glasgow city centre Kirkcudbright in Dumfries & Galloway, with the region hosting the OVO Energy Tour of Britain for the 10th time.  At 201 kilometres the opening day will be the longest of the 2019 race.

For the first time Scotland hosts the opening pair of stages, with Stage Two taking place entirely within the Scottish Borders, starting and finishing on the cobbled Market Square in Kelso on Sunday 8 September.

Two stages then take place in England’s North East, the first of which is a North of Tyne stage from Berwick-upon-Tweed to Newcastle-upon-Tyne on Monday 9 September before Stage Four begins just across the River Tyne in Gateshead.   The stages mark 10 years since the OVO Energy Tour of Britain last visited Newcastle and Gateshead.

From Gateshead riders will cross the Pennines and through the Yorkshire Dales National Park on Tuesday 10 September in a 171-kilometre stage containing almost 3,000 metres of climbing.  The stage finish will be on the 500 metres, 11% average climb of Beast Banks in the South Lakeland town of Kendal, which hosts a finish of the race for a fourth time.

Action resumes on Wednesday 11 September as the OVO Energy Tour of Britain returns to Merseyside for the first time in five years with Wirral hosting Stage Five.  The leg will start and finish in Birkenhead Park and include a finishing circuit, making it one of the most spectator friendly of the whole Tour.

Riders will then do battle in a stage entirely within Worcestershire for the first time on Thursday 12 September, one that will help shape who succeeds Julian Alaphillipe as the winner of the OVO Energy Green Jersey.

Tour of Britain

The penultimate stage of the race is in Warwickshire with a 186.5-kilometre route from historic Warwick finishing with three ascents of the 1.4-kilometre, 4.9% average gradient climb of Burton Dassett.  The stage will take in two laps of a 12.5-kilometre finishing circuit ensuring an exciting and action packed finale.

Saturday 14 September will see a stage of the OVO Energy Tour of Britain finish in Manchester city centre for the first time since the inaugural edition of the modern Tour in 2004, with Deansgate hosting the finale of Stage Eight.  The final day of racing will see the peloton taking on a 165-kilometre route starting in Altrincham that includes almost 2,000 metres of climbing, including the famous climb of the Rake at Ramsbottom and passes through all ten boroughs of Greater Manchester.

ITV4 will once again screen live free-to-air coverage flag-to-flag of each stage in the UK, along with a nightly highlights programme of the best of the action.

The OVO Energy Tour of Britain is British Cycling’s premier road cycling event, giving cycling fans the opportunity to see the world’s best teams and riders competing on their doorstep and helping to build a great cycling nation.

Tour of Britain

Stages

Stage 1

Saturday 7 September

Glasgow to Kirkcudbright

201.5km

Stage 2

Sunday 8 September

The Scottish Borders Stage

166.4km

Stage 3

Monday 9 September

Berwick-upon-Tweed to Newcastle-upon-Tyne

182.2km

Stage 4

Tuesday 10 September

Gateshead to Kendal

171.5km

Stage 5

Wednesday 11 September

The Wirral Stage

174km

Stage 6

Thursday 12 September

The Worcestershire Stage

TBA

Stage 7

Friday 13 September

Warwick to Burton Dassett Country Park

186.5km

Stage 8

Saturday 14 September

Altrincham to Manchester

165km

Membership discount for club members