World champion Mark Cavendish and Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins will spearhead Team Sky’s Tour of Britain challenge, it was announced today.
It will be Wiggins’ first competitive return to Surrey since the Olympic cycling events this summer when he clinched gold in the time trial.
Joining him in Team Sky’s line up will be Mark Cavendish, a double stage winner in last year’s Tour of Britain and the first ever British rider to win the Tour de France green jersey.
The final stage of the Tour of Britain will take place in Surrey on September 16, starting in Reigate and winding through 90 miles of the county’s roads before what is set to be a thrilling finish up the cobbled streets of Guildford High Street.
Team Sky today announced their provisional start-list : Mark Cavendish (GBr); Bernhard Eisel (Aut); Jeremy Hunt (GBr); Christian Knees (Ger); Thomas Löfkvist (Swe); Bradley Wiggins (GBr). Reserves: Salvatore Puccio (Ita); Luke Rowe (GBr)
Race Director Mick Bennett: “To have the reigning Tour de France and Olympic time trial champion and the current world champion competing in The Tour of Britain is a dream for us. That both riders are British and such great champions means that there is now a unprecented interest in the event.
“We are delighted that The Tour of Britain will be the first chance for many British fans to see Bradley Wiggins since his Tour de France and Olympic successes. We are also very pleased that Mark Cavendish to the race again so he can ‘show-off’ the rainbow stripes in front of home fans.”
Helyn Clack, Surrey County Council’s Cabinet Member for Community Services and the 2012 Games, said: “It’s been the ultimate summer for British cycling and hosting the final stage of the Tour of Britain will build on Surrey’s Olympic success.
“We brought the race here because it will boost the economy by as much as £2.5 million, strengthen the county’s reputation as a world class cycling destination and inspire even more people to try out the sport. It’s going to be thrilling to watch elite cycling on our doorsteps again for free.”
Surrey County Council is helping to stage the race and in preparation has sent newsletters to residents and businesses on the route. This is to ensure people have all the information they need to make the most of the race and prepare for any disruption.
The leaflets include detailed information about road closures, parking restrictions, maps and tips for how people can plan ahead and enjoy the action.
Unlike the Olympic races where all roads on the route were closed from early in the morning, for the Tour of Britain most roads will only be closed for a short time just before the cyclists come through and will open again once the last support vehicle passes through.
However, some roads will be closed for longer around the start and finish lines in Reigate and Guildford as well as West Street in Dorking and Barhatch Road in Cranleigh. Parking restrictions will also be in place.
Starting in Reigate, the Surrey stage will see riders pass through Guildford early in the race before returning for the finish. Dorking, Shere, Mayford, West Horsley, Ockley, Cranleigh, Dunsfold, Witley and Bramley are among other towns and villages on the route.
Estimated times for when the riders will pass through each area are available on http://www.gosurrey.info.
Media requiring more information can contact Surrey County Council senior media relations officer James Oxley at firstname.lastname@example.org.