786 cyclists took part in Sunday’s Aviva Tour Ride, the official sportive of The Tour of Britain, in Worcestershire alongside the former World Champion, Hugh Porter MBE.
Participants cycled one of three different routes, headlined by a 100-mile Pro route designed to showcase some of the most attractive and challenging routes in Worcestershire. Hugh Porter MBE cycled the 40-mile route but entrants were also able to test themselves against the 75-mile intermediate route.
The Tour Ride started outside the University of Worcester Arena and incorporated elements of the 2014 Tour of Britain stage in Worcestershire. It was hailed as a success by event organisers Sweetspot.
Gary Woodman, Executive Director for the WLEP, said: “It was fantastic to see so many people participating in the Worcestershire Aviva Tour Ride, including former World Champion Hugh Porter MBE. These high-profile sporting events have a hugely positive impact on our local economy and the Aviva Tour Ride in particular is a brilliant event for showcasing the county to those who may not have visited Worcestershire before. We have heard many participants, including Hugh Porter MBE, talk about Worcestershire’s natural beauty and several participants are already considering returning to Worcestershire.”
Alongside the Tour Ride, local residents also took part in a Family Ride. Parents and children of all ages came along to the event to take part and cycle the three and a half miles around the river in Worcester.
Councillor Tony Miller, Vice-Chairman of Worcestershire County Council, said: “The support for this event has been enormous and it’s so good to see children and adults all getting out on their bikes to explore World Class Worcestershire. Worcestershire has done a great job of hosting the Aviva Tour Ride and I would just like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has been involved in the running and organisation of the event.”
Recognising the role that sport plays in boosting the local economy, the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership worked with the organisers, Sweetspot, and partners to bring this important sportive to the County. Worcestershire County Council, Worcester City Council, Heart of Worcestershire College as well as Wychavon District Council, Malvern Hills District Council and Wyre Forest District Council welcomed the route into their districts and the University of Worcester (Arena) and The Racecourse hosted the start and the finish locations.
The Aviva Tour Ride, previously known as the Friends Life Tour Ride, was launched in 2009 as the official sportive of the Tour of Britain and Women’s Tour races. The Aviva Tour Ride gives amateur cyclists the chance to have the professional experience and enjoy a full supported ride.
Rider times and photos from the event can be found on the Aviva Tour Ride website www.touride.co.uk