Yorkshire will stage the Tour de France grand depart again, Director Christian Prudhomme has told press in Bradford this morning.
It’s “Not if, but when,” Prudhomme told gathered media this morning at the launch of the 2017 Tour De Yorkshire’s route.
The 2017 race features three stages in the heart of Yorkshire and will once again be followed by the women’s race, set to take place on the same route as the second stage of the Men’s race.
The route is as follows:
STAGE ONE: 173km –THE COAST AND WOLDS
BRIDLINGTON TO SCARBOROUGH – Friday 28 April
The race takes the peloton from the coast through the Yorkshire Wolds, starting outside the refurbished Bridlington Spa and heading into Pocklington for the first intermediate sprint. The classified climbs up the Côtes de Garrowby Hill and Goathland will get the legs pumping before the race hits the coastline again at Whitby where the riders will get a great view of the world-famous Abbey as they contest the second sprint of the day. The route continues on to Robin Hood’s Bay for the third and final climb and then it’s full steam into Scarborough for the now-legendary finish along North Bay.
STAGE TWO: 122.5km – HISTORIC MARKET TOWNS
TADCASTER TO HARROGATE – Saturday 29 April
Starting on Tadcaster bridge – which will be newly reopened following flood damage last Boxing Day – this stage takes the riders through some of Yorkshire’s finest market towns. They will venture into Knaresborough, where the first intermediate sprint points are up for grabs, and the day’s sole categorised climb comes on the fearsome Côte de Lofthouse before the descent into Masham. It’s on to Ripon for the second intermediate sprint and the race will skirt the stunning Fountains Abbey before a fast approach to Harrogate. The action reaches its crescendo along Parliament Street, just as it did on the opening stage of the 2014 Tour de France.
STAGE THREE: 194.5km – THE YORKSHIRE TERRIER
BRADFORD TO FOX VALLEY (SHEFFIELD) – Sunday 30 April
Named The Yorkshire Terrier as this is the toughest stage in the history of the Tour de Yorkshire, riders will start at Bradford City Park before heading into Saltaire. The action then briefly joins the 2014 Tour de France route at Burley-in-Wharfedale before passing the majestic Bolton Abbey and into the Yorkshire Dales. Skipton is the next town on the agenda, with the first of eight categorised climbs being contested on the Côte de Silsden. The following ascent comes on the cobbled rise up Haworth’s picturesque main street and another climb at Leeming must also be tackled before they face the infamous Côte de Shibden Wall. This cobbled brute could see splits form before the intermediate sprints in Clifton and Stocksbridge. Once those have been contested the riders then embark on a torturous 22km finishing circuit that features no-less than four categorised climbs at Deepcar, Wigtwizzle, Ewden Height and Midhopestones before the race reaches its climax at Fox Valley.
Sir Gary Verity said of the event: “I can’t wait to see the world’s best riders tackling these routes. We’ve worked hard to design a course which showcases Yorkshire’s stunning scenery as well as delivering a thrilling sporting event. Last year the race attracted 2 million spectators and generated £60 million for the local economy, and we’ll go from strength to strength again next year.”