Excitement is building for the inaugural Women's Tour. Kicking off in May the event will host a number professional women's teams. Today we found out who will be attending, and thankfully the list doesn't disappoint.
Earlier this month, international cycling champion Marianne Vos confirmed she would be participating, but it was not until today's announcement that the scale of the field of competition was revealed.
With 11 of the top 14 teams racing, it's going to be a star studded affair, and an event not to be missed!
British Olympians Laura Trott, Joanna Rowsell and Dani King will be present, as part of the Wiggle Honda team. Hannah Barnes will be home and racing in her native Northamptonshire with US team UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling, who are traveling from across the pond to compete.
Great Britain and the Netherlands will also be fielding their national teams, and on the home front, British domestic team Matrix Fitness-Vulpine will also be on the start line on 7 May.
The Women's Tour has attracted significant international attention, with teams from as far afield as Mexico and Australia taking part.
"We are thrilled to be able to bring such a world-class field of teams to ride in the first ever Women's Tour. The race has attracted a wonderful field of elite riders from all over the world, which will be one of the strongest fields ever assembled for an elite women's international race, and a route which will feature some of the most beautiful roads, villages, towns and countryside in Great Britain."
Guy Elliot, SweetSpot Group – Women’s Tour Organisers
The Women's Tour 2014 - List of Participating Teams
- Astana Bepink Women's Team (Ita)
- Boels Dolmans Cycling Team (Ned)
- Hitec Products (Nor)
- Estado de Mexico Faren (Mex)
- Great Britain (GBr)
- Lotto Belisol Ladies (Bel)
- Matrix Fitness - Vulpin (GBr)
- Netherlands (Ned)
- Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies (USA)
- Orica - AIS (Aus)
- Rabo Liv Women's Cycling Team (Ned)
- Specialized - Lululemon (USA)
- UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team (USA)
- Wiggle Honda (GBr)
Having been awarded a prestigious 2:1 classification by the UCI, cycling's governing body, the Women's Tour has clearly succeeded in enticing the big names in women's cycling to compete. This ranking places the event in the upper echelons of international race events, and puts its ranking on a par with the men's Tour of Britain event.
There are a further two teams to be announced, but one thing's already certain - with a line up that features so many of the stars of cycling, this event is one to watch.
The Women's Tour starts on 7 May from Oundle, and finishes on Sunday 11 May in Bury St Edmunds. Find out the full list of stages here.