THE MAN who brought the Tour de France to God’s Own Country has received the top accolade at The Yorkshire Post Excellence in Business Awards.
Gary Verity beat off rival bids from Scotland and Europe to bring the cycling race to Yorkshire this summer.
Organisers hailed the weekend as the “grandest ever Grand Depart” after five million people turned out to watch the 200 riders pedal through Yorkshire’s spectacular countryside.
The Yorkshire Post’s Business Editor Bernard Ginns presented the individual award to Mr Verity at the ceremony on Thursday night.
Mr Verity explained: “I wanted to put on an event that would inspire the world to come to Yorkshire and more importantly to inspire our young people here to believe that if they want to achieve something they can achieve it right here.
“They don’t have to go abroad, they don’t have to London; we can do what is world class right here and we did it that weekend in July and we will do it time and time again now.”
The ceremony took place at The Queens hotel and attracted an audience of leading Yorkshire businesses, ranging from fast-growing technology start-ups to corporate giants.
Headline speaker Iain Duncan Smith, the Work and Pensions Secretary, praised them for creating jobs and helping to drive Britain’s economic recovery.
Justin Webb, the BBC journalist who presents the Today programme, was master of ceremonies.