What's Cool In Road Cycling

Leicester gears up for Castle Classic bike race

TOP level cycle racing will make a return to Leicester this summer thanks to a partnership between Leicester City Council and British Cycling.

The inaugural Leicester Castle Classic cycle race will take place on Sunday, August 18.

Full details of the circuit are still being finalised, although organisers have confirmed that the two-hour race will take place around Castle Gardens in the city’s Old Town, and along the banks of the ‘Mile Straight’ stretch of the River Soar.

British Cycling are hoping to attract elite level teams for the headline race, but amateur cyclists will also have the opportunity to race the circuit with a junior race, corporate challenge, and ‘choppers and shoppers’ event all proposed.

Races will run from midday until 6pm on traffic free roads, with entertainment, refreshments and lots of opportunities to give cycle sport a go available in the race village.

Non-racers will also have the opportunity to ride parts of the circuit themselves the following weekend, when Sky Ride Leicester returns to the city centre on Sunday, August 25.

The Leicester Castle Classic is being organised by Leicester City Council and British Cycling.

City Mayor Peter Soulsby said: “British Cycling’s success at last year’s Tour de France and the London 2012 Olympics has given cycle sport a massive boost.

“It is fantastic that our partnership with British Cycling means that we are able to bring the spectacle of elite-level cycle racing back to Leicester. The Castle Classic bike race is set to be a highlight of our Summer in the City programme.

“The number of people cycling in Leicester grows every year. This new race, and Leicester’s incredibly popular Sky Ride, are both great ways of celebrating this acheivement and developing our ongoing commitment to cycling.”

Jonny Clay, British Cycling’s Cyclesport and Membership Director said: “This event is a great addition to the calendar and one we hope to see establish itself for the long term in a city with such a rich cycling heritage.

“We’re expecting to see all of the country’s top domestic teams on the start line when the big day arrives in August.”

More information about the race, including online registration for racers, will be available at www.britishcycling.org.uk.

Leicester City Council and British Cycling will be releasing details of this years’ Sky Ride later this month. In the meantime, people can register for the event at www.goskyride.org/leicester.

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