This year’s OVO Energy Tour of Britain will feature its best ever line-up of riders, that’s the verdict of Race Director Mick Bennett, and backed up statistically by leading cycling website ProCyclingStats.com
The 120-rider field for the race contains three of the past five riders to have won the World Road Race Champions in Michal Kwiatkowski (2014), Philippe Gilbert (2012) and Mark Cavendish (2011) as well as three former Tour of Britain champions in Edvald Boasson Hagen (2015 and 2009), Dylan Van Baarle (2014) and Lars Boom (2011).
“I’m excited by the field for this year’s OVO Energy Tour of Britain and the stellar line-up of riders that we have here taking part in the Tour,” said Race Director Mick Bennett.
“I have never known such strength-in-depth from so many teams in the race, particularly Quick-Step Floors, Sky and Dimension Data to name but three.”
That strength in depth is backed up by ProCyclingStats.com who rank the 2017 Tour as having the best quality field of any edition of the OVO Energy Tour of Britain to date, with eight of their top 25 ranked riders taking part and 24-riders having won Grand Tour stages.
Recently crowned European Road Race Champion Alexander Kristoff is one of six Olympic medallists in the field, while there are also five current National Road Race Champions down to start the OVO Energy Tour.
Fans can also look forward to seeing the special jerseys of World Time Trial Champion Tony Martin, European Time Trial Champion Victor Campenaerts and six national time trial champions in action during the Stage Five test against the clock at Clacton, Essex on Thursday 7 September.
The full provisional rider list featuring riders from 24-different countries can be downloaded here.
At 39-years and 11-days JLT Condor’s Russ Downing is the oldest rider in the race, while a trio of riders are under 20, with Great Britain rider Adam Hartley the youngest on the start list at 18-year and 349-days.
Downing, like Mark Cavendish will be lining up for his tenth Tour of Britain, while BIKE Channel Canyon’s Rob Partridge will be starting his eleventh Tour of Britain, equalling the record number of participations of Kristian House.
“I’m very proud that the Tour of Britain finishes in Cardiff this year,” said Partridge. “Not only does it finish just 20-minutes from my house but it takes in all my training roads in the finale, from Monmouth to Newport and all the way back into Cardiff.
“Cycling in Wales has just grown from strength to strength over the recent years, and to have a whole crew of Welsh boys at this years’ race will be great! I can’t wait to get going now, and very much looking forward to racing into Cardiff in front of the huge crowd, along with all my friends and family”
The OVO Energy Tour of Britain begins in Edinburgh on Sunday (3 September) morning at 10.30 with live coverage on ITV4 from 10.15, with Stage One finishing in Kelso in the Scottish Borders.
The OVO Energy Tour of Britain is British Cycling’s premier road cycling event, giving cycling fans the opportunity to see the world’s best teams and riders competing on their door step, taking place between Sunday 3 and Sunday 10 September 2017.