Road Cycling Events

The Westminster Grand Prix 2013 and women’s Tour of Britain 2014

Fancy recapturing the excitement of the RideLondon Grand Prix? Yearning for the action of the 2012 Olympics? Fear not – there are more top women’s races coming up this year, and even more to come in 2014.

Westminster Grand Prix – 22nd September 2013

Sunday 22nd September see the women’s Westminster Grand Prix take place. Timed to coincide with the final stage of the Tour of Britain, which hits London on the same day, the race will see the UK’s top female riders race through the heart of London. They’ll be passing iconic sights like Big Ben, Parliament Square and Downing Street.

The RideLondon Grand Prix, which took place in August 2013

The race is organised and run by SweetSpot, who – as well as running the Tour of Britain – also organise the Tour Series of televised city centre races.

SweetSpot director Guy Elliot has a proven track record in supporting women’s cycling, including incorporating women’s races into the Tour Series and developing the Johnson Health Tech Grand Prix Series.

This is a fantastic chance to provide spectators with the chance of seeing more top class racing and some of Britain’s top female cyclists in action during the final day celebrations in London

Guy Elliot, Director of SweetSpot

Riders from club cyclists to Olympic Champions are invited and expected, with entry now open through British Cycling, and closing on the 15th September.

There will be televised coverage, as action from the event will be incorporated into feeds from ITV4 and Eurosport – lets hope it gets plenty of airtime!

SweetSpot see this as a way of building up interest and coverage for the hotly anticipated Women’s Tour five-day stage race, which launches in 2014.

The Women’s Tour – May 2014

There are even more reasons to be excited about cycling in 2014. May will see the first ever Women’s Tour, a 5-day stage race across the East Midlands and East Anglia.

Aiming to attract the top international female riders, the Women’s Tour is being pitched as a game changer in the world of professional cycling for a number of reasons, not least of which is the promise of equal prize money to the men’s event

It cannot carry on that we discriminate against women in sport from the age of 15.

Guy Elliot, Director of SweetSpot

It’s not (yet) the Women’s Tour of Britain, and will be run separately to the men’s Tour of Britain which takes place in September. This is partly because British Cycling owns the right to that name, partly for logistics, and partly because SweetSpot feel that having a high profile, stand-alone race is the way to go.

We want to run a separate women’s tour, one for logistics reasons, but two we think we should create our own package around women having their own event. All the towns, all the flashy podium presentations will be geared around the women’s race and not the women just turning up before the main event arrives.

Guy Elliot, Director of SweetSpot

Another crucial element, and one that has been talked about time and time again when it comes to pro-women’s racing, is coverage. It’s something that SweetSpot have clearly put a lot of thought and planning into, developing ideas for broadcasters to get behind.

Our plan is to get an hour’s TV coverage each day. 20-30 minutes of that might be focusing on the riders and their stories, what goes on behind the scenes, how to get into the sport and maybe 30 minutes on the actual racing.

Guy Elliot, Director of SweetSpot

British Cycling and SweetSpot have indicated that this isn’t a one-off, but the first of many such events

The event will be separate from the men’s race, but it will be promoted to a high standard and will, I’m sure, be the first step in having a full equivalent Tour of Britain as it develops.

Brian Cookson, President of British Cycling


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