Further details of the opening stage of the 2019 OVO Energy Women’s Tour in Suffolk on Monday 10 June have today been announced.
Riders will tackle two SKODA Queen of the Mountains climbs and contest three intermediate Eisberg Sprints during the 157.6 kilometre leg from Beccles to Stowmarket.
Action will get underway in the centre of Beccles, with 96 riders from 16 teams due to take the start at 10:30, with the finish on Ipswich Road in Stowmarket expected between 14:30 and 15:10.
The first intermediate Eisbeg Sprint, backed by the UK’s number one alcohol-free wine, will come after 98 kilometres or around two hours of racing outside the entrance to RAF Honington, near Ixworth.
The day’s second Eisberg Sprint comes not long after at Fornham St Martin on the outskirts of Bury St Edmunds, while riders will also contest a third Eisberg Sprint as they race through Stowmarket for the first time, before tackling a 12 kilometre finishing circuit.
The first three riders across the line at each Eisberg Sprint will earn points on a 3-2-1 basis, with the leading rider being presented the Eisberg Sprints Jersey on the podium in Stowmarket following Stage One.
Two SKODA Queen of the Mountains climbs are in the second half of the stage, the first at Little Whelnetham after almost 125 kilometres, while the second comes with just over six kilometres of racing remaining at Buxhall, giving riders the perfect opportunity for a late attack to try and steal victory in Stowmarket.
Dr Amanda Jones, Suffolk County Council Director of Public Health, said:
“The sprints and climbs announced today demonstrate the exciting route we have planned and the many fantastic locations for spectators to catch the action.
The Women’s Tour and events like it provide an excellent opportunity to showcase Suffolk to an international audience, while encouraging communities across the county to get on their bikes, get active and help us to make Suffolk the most active county in England.
Being active has real social, physical and mental health benefits and I hope that this year’s race inspires even more people to take up cycling and take part in the wide range of events Suffolk has to offer, as part of an active and healthy lifestyle.”
Paul Wood, Head of Economic Development and Regeneration at East Suffolk Council said:
“We’re looking forward to welcoming the OVO Energy Women’s Tour back to East Suffolk, especially as Beccles will be hosting the Grand Depart for the first time.
The event is a great opportunity for our communities and local businesses to get involved and help showcase our beautiful area to a national audience.”
Following Stage One in Suffolk, the OVO Energy Women’s Tour will feature stages in Kent, Oxfordshire and Warwickshire, before the final two days of racing in Wales with the penultimate stage in Powys before the final stage in Carmarthenshire, finishing on the south Wales coast at Pembrey Country Park. The race continues to form part of the prestigious UCI Women’s WorldTour series, which began with the Strade Bianche one-day race in Italy on 9 March.
Further details of this year’s OVO Energy Women’s Tour, including the full race route and competing teams, will be released in the coming weeks.