I was delighted when our bid earlier this year to bring the Tour de Yorkshire to Doncaster was successful. This week that news got even better, when we received the fantastic announcement that Doncaster will be host to both the Saturday finishes of the 2016 event.
The Tour is quickly becoming one of the most prized events in the global cycling calendar.
Welcome to Yorkshire has estimated that this year’s event generated £50million for the Yorkshire region, and the event is going to be bigger and better in 2016.
As well as hosting the finish on Stage 2 of the men’s race, I am delighted that we will also be hosting the climax of the inaugural women’s race, featuring the world’s leading female riders.
The route will encompass large parts of Doncaster, visiting some of the most well-known and important landmarks in the borough.
Starting in the north, the peleton will race through the picturesque village of Hooton Pagnell before passing close to the beautiful Brodsworth and Cusworth Halls.
Doncaster will host a sprint point at Warmsworth, before a lap of, and King/Queen of the Mountain, at 11th century Conisbrough Castle. The teams will then fly through Tickhill and Bawtry, before racing through Austerfield and along the perimeter of Doncaster Sheffield Airport. Finally the stage will culminate along Bawtry Road, travelling past the race course and on to a sprint finish on South Parade.
In our opinion, Saturday will be the most exciting and prestigious day of this blue-ribbon event.
With horseracing also taking place in Doncaster on the Saturday evening, there is a fantastic opportunity for residents and visitors to enjoy a great day in the borough.
Of course we hope and expect local businesses will also benefit significantly, which is another reason I am so pleased that we have secured the Saturday finish.
Last year, Scarborough estimated that being a host town delivered a total economic impact of around £1 million for the area.
Being part of this internationally-renowned sporting event is a tremendous opportunity for local people to get involved and help create a carnival atmosphere along the route.
We can also showcase our wonderful assets to visitors and audiences across the world thanks to the live coverage of the race on national television networks and in the media in the run-up, during and after the spectacle.
We have already contacted local parish councils, businesses and partner organisations, and I would strongly encourage everyone to get involved and make this a hugely successful event for Doncaster and Yorkshire.