It’s been confirmed that the fifth stage of the ‘Tour of Britain’ will be passing right through Ruddington this summer. The elite cycle race will again come via the centre of our village on Thursday 8th September 2022 – four years to the day since the last time.
As in 2018, the Nottinghamshire stage will begin on Central Avenue in West Bridgford and then pass via Wilford Road, High Street, Kirk Lane and Loughborough Road in Ruddington as part of the 118 mile route ending on Chesterfield Road South in Mansfield.
This year, there’s extra local interest because Ruddington’s Ollie Peckover is among the 114 top riders currently scheduled to take part in the race – competing for the Ribble Weldtite Pro Cycling team.
After getting his first taste of international racing as a junior, aged 18 (during the 2016 season), Ollie has since progressed through racing in the elite national road series against the top riders in the UK. He found himself taking home a top 10 finish against the likes of Mark Cavendish, Andre Greipel and Wout Van Aert in Aberdeen, before being selected for the Tour of Britain.
“Now, looking ahead to the 2022 Tour of Britain, there is another level of excitement, as the race passes through not only my home county, but also my home village” says Ollie. “Looking back to the last time it came through Ruddington, there were hundreds of spectators lining the streets, all the way from the Ruddington Arms to the Brickies, three deep in places. After the last two years, with people being stuck indoors for the most part, I suspect the crowds will be even bigger than before, as everybody gets out looking to get a piece of the action and show their support.”
He adds: “After living in Ruddington for nearly 24 years now, and riding the same roads as on the race route every single week since the age of 12, this tour I suspect will be pretty special!”
A global television audience of millions is expected to watch Ollie and the others competing in the world-famous race; with the Nottinghamshire stage attracting 250,000 spectators in 2018 – to make it the largest sporting event in the county’s history. It led to our area enjoying an economic boost, with an estimated £3.9 million being spent by participants and spectators on accommodation, food & drink and shopping.
Rushcliffe Borough Council’s Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Communities and Climate Change, Cllr Abby Brennan, says: “We’re so pleased that the Tour will be coming back to Rushcliffe and Nottinghamshire, it’s sure to be another wonderful spectacle that our communities and residents can embrace. We can’t wait to give it another warm and rapturous reception as it races through so many of our towns and villages.”
Certainly anyone resident or trading in Ruddington in 2018 can’t fail to remember the anticipation created by the top riders being routed right through our village. It led to months of preparation ahead of ‘the big day’ by individuals, local businesses, numerous organisations and Ruddington Parish Council – and then thousands of villagers lining our streets to cheer on the riders – captured in the photographs and videos below.
Whilst it was all over in seconds, the ‘buzz’ created as top cyclists including Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome pelted through Ruddington on Saturday 8th September 2018 has lived long in spectators’ memories.
Along Wilford Road…
…then through the High Street onto Kirk Lane.
Mick Bennett, the Tour of Britain race director, says: “We are pleased to be able to confirm the route for this year’s Nottinghamshire stage and look forward to making returns to both West Bridgford and Mansfield, as well as many familiar locations along the way. The support of Nottinghamshire communities along the stage route in both 2017 and 2018 was incredible so, with 150 days to go until the race, I hope that today’s news will inspire everyone along the route to get excited and to start making their plans for the 8th of September.”
The modern-day Tour of Britain was launched in 2004 and – apart from the Covid-19 pandemic forcing its cancellation in 2020 – has taken place annually every September over eight days. Live coverage of the race will be on ITV4 in the UK, in addition to TV channels around the world.