Tour de France bosses in grand intention to ‘spread the love’

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Yorkshire Tour de France bosses have announced their intention to “spread the love”, as a broader three-day elite cycle race from 2015 is to cover more of the county.

The as yet unnamed major international cycle race was the headline announcement to come from tourism agency Welcome to Yorkshire’s Y14 business conference.

To launch the Yorkshire Festival, a unicycle disply team performs in front of the fountains,which have been turned yellow, in Sheffield's Peace Gardens.

To launch the Yorkshire Festival, a unicycle disply team performs in front of the fountains,which have been turned yellow, in Sheffield's Peace Gardens.

The event marked 100 days until the July 5 and 6 race send-off, which agency chief executive has pledged will be “the grandest of Grand Departs”.

The agency, British Cycling and Tour de France organisers 
Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO) have signed an agreement to deliver a three-day elite race, at the Harrogate International Centre event.

Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, told The Yorkshire Post that the aim for the new race would be to take in more areas of the county.

Explaining that all parties were ready to sign a memorandum of understanding to get the race planning under way, he 
said: “From May 2015 onwards it will go right the way across the county and we will aim to spread the love, including the coast and places like Ryedale and East Yorkshire.”

He continued: “The vision is to take it to places where the Tour de France isn’t going – not to say it won’t come back to places on the Tour routes.”

The Y14 event was attended by Tour de France legends Bernard Hinault and Brian Robinson as well as high-profile guests including Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

Legends lend a hand: Page 8