Tour de France

Yorkshire bids for TDF stage

2012-07-09 15:52
Tour de France (File)

London - The English county of Yorkshire is aiming to host the opening stages or 'Grand Depart' of the 2016 Tour de France.

Arguably the world's most famous cycle race, and one of France's greatest sporting events, the Tour has started abroad several times and this year got underway in Liege, Belgium.

Five years ago it began in England for the first time with a prologue in London and then a time-trial from London to the south-eastern city of Canterbury.

That visit, and previous Tour stops in England in 1974 and 1994, have tended to concentrate on the south coast, the closest part of the country to France and now served by the Channel Tunnel rail link.

But going to Yorkshire would mean a trip to the north of England.

However, the Yorkshire team, as well as proposing to hold two legs in the county, which boasts some of England's most scenic countryside as well as the Dales, a series of hills, are also looking to stage another part of the race in southern England.

This, they maintain, would enable the Tour to ensure riders and teams are back in France soon after the finish, preventing any need for rest days.

Mark Cavendish, who last year became the first British rider to win the Tour's green jersey - a prize for the race's leading sprinter -- is among those backing the Yorkshire bid.

"My Mum is from Yorkshire so I'm proud to be backing the Yorkshire 2016 bid," he said. "The county would provide a stunning backdrop to the Tour as well as a real test for the competitors.

"I have fond memories of holidaying in Yorkshire, a lot of my family still live there and it would be fantastic if the world's greatest cycle race could come to Yorkshire, I'm sure it would host a stunning Grand Depart."

On Monday, the Tour came to the eastern French town of Besancon, which has a cycling connection of its own with Yorkshire.

Besancon is twinned with the Yorkshire town of Kirklees, the birthplace of Brian Robinson, the first British rider to complete the Tour, in 1955.

Three years later, he also became the first Briton to win a Tour stage.

Read more on:    tdf  |  cycling


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk
Most Read


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

Habana believes in younger Boks
All Blacks ready for a 'hell of a battle'
Barnes to ref Boks, Wales clash
Brave Blossoms: 'Sport heroes of Japan'



What do you enjoy most about the Tour de France?

Love 2 Meet

Take a photographical trip down memory lane and remind yourself of how the Springboks fared in their five previous Rugby World Cup campaigns. In addition, pick your all-time Springbok Rugby World Cup Dream Team and you could win R3 000!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.