Be quick to catch cycle stars as Tour of Britain announced

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The villages of Blidworth and Bilsthorpe are set to enjoy cycle sprints after the route of the 2018 Tour of Britain was announced.

It was revealed the villages will both host sprint sections during stage seven of the professional cycling race on Saturday, September 8, when the full route of the race was announced last night.

The race will begin in South Wales on Sunday, September 2, with stages set to take place in Devon, Bristol, the West Midlands and Cumbria and the Lake District before arriving in Nottinghamshire.

Stage seven, the longest stage of the race at 223 kilometres or 139 miles, will take in key county landmarks such as the new Sherwood Forest Visitor centre, Newstead Abbey, Clumber Park and Trent Bridge Cricket Ground, as well as taking riders over Trent Bridge for the first time.

The 120 riders will set off fromWest Bridgford before heading south to Ruddington.

They will then head north, via Radcliffe-on-Trent and Southwell to Retford.

Riders will then head west to Worksop, then south to Bilsthorpe and Hucknall before swinging north again to finish in Mansfield, although the exact route through the district will not be revealed until later this month.

It marks a return to Nottinghamshire after more than 200,000 spectators lined the streets last year to watch stage four of the race on a Thursday between Mansfield and Newark.

Mick Bennett, race director, said: “Last year, we enjoyed fantastic support in Nottinghamshire, so we are delighted to be returning to the area in September with Stage Seven, which is also the longest of this year’s race.”

It is believed hosting a stage last year boosted the local economy by about £3,4 million.

Councillor Kay Cutts, Nottinghamshire County Council leader, said: “We are absolutely delighted the race will be returning to our great county and will take in every district.

“Last year’s event really was a fantastic day and shows Nottinghamshire has what it takes to host a sporting event of this scale.

“We hope even more residents and visitors will turn out in force to experience this fantastic event this year - and let’s hope the county reaps even bigger economic benefits.”

Kate Allsop, Mansfield mayor, said: “We are pleased and proud Mansfield has been chosen as a host for the second year in a row – this time for the exciting finish.

“As it is on a Saturday, we hope this will enable even more people than last year to line the streets and provide a huge welcome for the cyclists.”

as they make their way to the finish line.

“There will be plenty of ways you can get involved - from decorating your home or business, entering competitions, to enjoying the cycling-themed entertainment at our summer festivals – so keep an eye out for more information nearer the time.

“We hope you will join us to show the world the very best that Mansfield has to offer.”

Brendan Moffett, chief executive of Marketing NG, which promotes Nottinghamshire externally, said: “It’s great to hear the Tour of Britain is coming back.

“This year’s route has the potential to attract more visitors and I’m sure we will see a great turnout from residents.”