Tour of Britain set to return to Devon

Ben Fox
Ben Fox

The Tour of Britain is back for 2020, kicking off with a Cornish stage on 6th September which will begin in Penzance and end in Bodmin.

Stage two, on Monday 7th September, will see riders tackle the bergs of Devon, in the race’s 11th visit to the county.

The second day of racing will kick off in the new community of Sherford in the South Hams, and finish in the city of Exeter.

Devon has played host to the race ten times previously; the last instance was in 2018. Australian Cameron Meyer won the stage, whilst a group of farmers from South Molton won the first ever ‘National Land Art’ competition for their depiction of a bicycle made from hay bales and tractors.

It’s estimated that 1.7 million people have lined the route in the county so far, bringing in £41 million to the local economy.

The full announcement of the 2020 route is expected early next year.
The race will see a peloton of around 120 riders seek to take the title from reigning champion, Mathieu van der Poel.

It will face stiff competition for star riders to take the start line, the first stage overlapping with the final stages of both the Vuelta a España and
BinckBank Tour. Towards the end of the week, it will also clash with the GP de Quebéc and Montréal.

This calendar reshuffle is in order to accommodate for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics which are being held in late July.

Councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon County Council Cabinet Member with responsibility for cycling, said: “We’re thrilled to be hosting another stage of The Tour. Crowds in Devon are among the most passionate and supportive in this race and I’m sure they’ll do us proud again in 2020.

Devon made history as the first stage of The Tour of Britain to host a summit finish when the race celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2013, and we were the first stage to race through a building when the 2018 stage went through South Molton Pannier Market, and no doubt we’ll have another exciting stage in prospect next year.

“With next year’s Tour starting in our neighbouring county of Cornwall, it should be another spectacular Tour for our county. To give the riders and spectators two days in our region by racing through Devon as well as  Cornwall has the potential for a big economic boost for our region and it’s always a great opportunity to showcase Devon as a premier destination for cycling tourism.”

Local Life