Leading cyclists are back for town races

Spectators enjoyed the cycling action in Motherwell last year as competitors raced in the town centre.
Spectators enjoyed the cycling action in Motherwell last year as competitors raced in the town centre.

Motherwell will once again welcome some of Britain’s top cyclists when the televised Pearl Izumi Tour Series returns in May.

For the first time Scotland has two venues for the series, with one of the rounds to be held in Edinburgh.

Councillor Jim Robertson, provost of North Lanarkshire, said, “We are very proud to host the Pearl Izumi Tour for the second year. Last year’s racing was tremendously exciting and the community turned out in huge numbers to support it.

“Hosting one of professional cycling’s top events reinforces that North Lanarkshire is a top sporting venue and we are looking forward to an even bigger turnout this year.”

Motherwell will host round two of the 10-round series on Tuesday, May 17, before the action returns to Edinburgh after a year’s absence for round three two days later.

As in 2015, Motherwell will also host a women’s race which will be round one of a newly expanded six-race calendar for Britain’s top female teams.

Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s director of events, is also delighted that the tour is back in town.

He said: “Events such as this not only inspire people to become more active but also broadcast terrific imagery of Scotland to audiences internationally, reinforcing the county’s reputation as the perfect stage for events.”

Thousands of cycling fans watched the action in Motherwell last year. Specators got a close-up view of the action as the races unfolded on a challenging 1.7km circuit which started and finished in Hamilton Road and took in High Road, Farm Street, Ladywell Road and Douglas Street.

Madison Genesis were the top team in Motherwell on their way to the overall title in the men’s series, while in the women’s race Milngavie’s Katie Archibald defeated the field, with Fife’s Eileen Roe third.

Craig Burn, chief executive for Scottish Cycling, said: “We are excited yet again to have the elite racing on our doorstep

“This time Scotland gets to host not just one but two stages of the tour, giving twice the opportunity to inspire those who do not cycle to ride, and those who do to ride more.

“We will continue to use events such as this to drive our wider cycling ambitions with regards to getting more people riding bikes.”