Rebecca Romero and Lizzie Armitstead were among the 7,000 riders who took part in the first Daily Mirror Great Manchester Cycle.
Hailed as the UK’s largest timed cycling event by the organiser, the closed road event took place on Monday June 4th on the long Jubilee weekend.
Three different distances based around a 13-mile closed road loop were offered to provide as wide an appeal as possible, with British Cycling members provided able to start at the very front of the ride thanks to the exclusive start pen. The ride, starting at Man City FC's Eastlands (or Etihad Stadium) included feed stations and timing chips making the 52-mile version England’s First Closed Road Cyclosportive.
“I spend a lot of time in Manchester and to be able to explore the city in this way is something I really wanted to do,” said Armitstead, who rode the 52-mile route and also set off the first wave of cyclists taking part in the 26-mile route. “It was a fantastic day and something I was delighted to be a part of.”
Rebecca Romero added: “This event is so great because it’s a big sporting event but it has closed roads and that’s unique. For people who cycle recreationally, to have this kind of structured event with a timing chip and to have the route mapped out, is a great opportunity to test themselves.”
Communications director for organisers Nova International David Hart commented: “We were thrilled with the reaction to the Great Manchester Cycle, which in its first year, has become the UK’s biggest timed cycling event.
“With the three distances, it was a celebration of cycling on the closed roads of Manchester to suit different levels of ability and we believe this event has a hugely exciting future.”
Left to right: Dean Andrews (Ashes to Ashes actor), Lizzie Armitstead, Rebecca Romero and Geoff Thomas (former England footballer).
Pic credit: Nova International
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