The route of the 2017 Tour of Britain has been officially unveiled, with a numbers of firsts in the British stage race’s history. Edinburgh will host the opening stage on Sunday, September 3, for the first time, with Cardiff hosting the finish of the eighth and final stage on Sunday, September 10, for a conclusion in Wales. Not since 2012 has the race has finished outside London.
Stage one kicks off in the prestigious surroundings of the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, heading south to Kelso in the Scottish Borders for a crowd-friendly finishing loop.
Stage two is hosted by Northumberland, with the stage starting near the picturesque Kielder Water and Forest Park before heading to Blyth on the race’s longest stage.
Then it’s further south to North Lincolnshire for stage three, which plays host the race for the first time since 2009. The day kicks off in the Normanby Hall country estate and finishes in Scunthorpe.
Stage four on Wednesday, September 6, is again hosted in its entirety by one county – this time, Nottinghamshire. Mansfield hosts the stage start with the finish taking place in Newark-on-Trent. It’s the first time that the race has visited both venues.
A 10-mile (16km) time trial stage takes place the following day in Tendring, Essex, which will undoubtedly help to shape the general classification. It’s the longest test against the clock in the race since 2013.
Then it’s west to the undulating roads of the Cotswolds for stage seven from Hemel Hempstead to Cheltenham.
The race concludes on Sunday, September 10, with a stage starting in Worcester and tackling the roads of Worcestershire and Herefordshire before finishing in the Welsh capital of Cardiff.
British independent energy supplier OVO Energy will be the race’s title sponsor. ITV4 will be broadcasting live television coverage of the race, with three hours of live coverage each day plus a one-hour highlights package. Twenty teams will line up for the race, with an announcement of the squads taking part due in the summer.
British rider Steve Cummings (Dimension Data) won the 2016 edition of the race.