Nine of the world’s top teams will be taking part in a major UK cycling race that includes two days in Northumberland.
Headlining the 20-team list for the Aviva Tour of Britain are Team Cannondale Garmin, which won the 2014 Tour of Britain with Dylan Van Baarle, and the Etixx Quick-Step team of superstar sprinter Mark Cavendish and World Champion Michal Kwiatkowski.
Top level British interests for victory are represented by Team Sky and he other six UCI WorldTeams that will race in the event are BMC Racing, IAM Cycling, Lotto Soudal, Movistar Team, Team Lotto NL Jumbo and Tinkoff-Saxo.
Those nine, plus UCI Pro Continental team MTN Qhubeka, were in action in the Tour de France last month. Between them they won 13 of the 21 stages.
The other two UCI Pro Continental teams are Cult Energy Pro Cycling (Denmark) and Team Novo Nordisk (USA).
Fans of the domestic racing scene will be able to cheer on all six of the country’s UCI Continental teams. Two of these squads – Team WIGGINS, the personal team of World Hour Record holder, Olympic gold medallist and former Tour de France winner Sir Bradley Wiggins, and ONE Pro Cycling, co-owned by former England cricketer Matt Prior – will make their Tour of Britain debuts.
The other four are JLT Condor, Madison Genesis, NFTO and Team Raleigh GAC. Completing the line-up are An Post-Chain Reaction from Ireland and a Great Britain Cycling Team full of promising riders.
Race director Mick Bennett said this is “undoubtedly the strongest line-up of teams to have appeared in the Aviva Tour of Britain”.
Jonny Clay, British Cycling director of cycle sport and membership, added: “The teams announcement confirms the Tour of Britain as a world-leading event in its class and sets a high standard for cycle sport in this country.
“Sport fans across the country can now look forward to seeing some of the best teams in the world on their local roads as the event provides a fantastic finale to the British sporting summer.”
The tour starts on Sunday, September 6 on Anglesey in Wales. Stage four on Wednesday, September 9 will see the riders cycle from Edinburgh to Blyth.
They will go through Widdrington Village, Cresswell and Ellington and other notable towns and villages along the route that day include Alnwick, Warkworth, Amble, Hadston, Red Row, Guide Post, Choppington, Bedlington and Cramlington.
Stage five on Thursday, September 10 starts in Prudhoe and the route goes through towns and villages in the west of the county, including Hexham, before heading into Cumbria.
Northumberland County Council worked with Active Northumberland, sponsors Northumbrian Water and race organisers SweetSpot to bring the race to the county.
Nigel Walsh, cultural services manager at Active Northumberland, said: “It is going to be an incredibly exciting sporting event with the world’s best cycle teams racing on two stages across Northumberland.”
Full Northumberland route details can be found at www.nlandtob.com and for more information about the event, visit www.tourofbritain.co.uk