The Friends Life Tour of Britain cycle race to return to Bury St Edmunds
Top cyclists are set to pass through Bury St Edmunds when The Friends Life Tour of Britain returns to East Anglia for the first time in three years.
Stage seven, on Saturday, September 12, will see British Cycling’s premier road cycling event return to Norfolk and Suffolk for the first time since both counties hosted the Grand Depart.
The stage, which at 225-kilometres is the longest of the 2015 Friends Life Tour of Britain, will start at Fakenham Racecourse before heading south via Aylsham, Norwich city centre, Wymondham and Attleborough to Thetford, where it will cross into Suffolk.
Passing through Thetford Forest on its way to Bury the route will take in Stowmarket, Needham Market, Hadleigh and East Bergholt, before racing under the Orwell Bridge and into Ipswich town centre for the finish.
Emma Hibbert, marketing director of Adnams, the principal partners to the East Anglia stage, said; “We are delighted that the Tour of Britain will be returning to Norfolk and Suffolk and Adnams is proud to continue to be the official beer of the race and sponsor of the East Anglian stage.
“We know that at every level, from recreational enthusiasts through to super fit club members, cycling is hugely popular with our customers throughout ‘Adnams country’ and beyond. With the Women’s Tour, the Tour of Britain and Suffolk County Council’s Year of Cycling, we have much two-wheeled activity to look forward to this year.”
While Suffolk has hosted the men’s Friends Life Tour of Britain on three occasions since 2010, Stage Seven will mark the first stage finish to be held in the county.
Cllr Alan Murray, Suffolk County Council’s cabinet member for health and adult care, said: “2015 promises to be a landmark year for cycling in Suffolk, with the recent launch of Suffolk’s Year of Cycling, announcement that the Grand Depart of the Women’s Tour will be in Suffolk on the 17th June and now the announcement that the Tour of Britain will be returning to the county for the first time since 2012.
“The spectacle of seeing our Olympic Champions race out of Ipswich in 2012 was inspirational and I have no doubt that the opportunity to watch the world’s best cyclist’s race into Ipswich for the finish of the penultimate stage of the 2015 Tour of Britain will create great excitement and draw huge crowds.
“It is the combination of inspirational events, such as the Women’s Tour and Tour of Britain, and cycling initiatives, such as Suffolk’s Year of Cycling, that will help us to get more residents active through cycling and contributing to our ambition to make Suffolk the most active county in England. We would encourage everyone to “come along for the ride” in 2015”
Further details of stage seven, including Ordnance Survey stage maps, will be announced in the summer, along with details of the 20 competing teams.