Burton Dassett Country Park will host the first hill-top finish in the OVO Energy Women’s Tour’s history in the race’s fourth visit to Warwickshire in as many years in June, it has been announced today (Monday, April 1).
Stage four of the race will see some of the world’s best riders start in Warwick, climb Edge Hill and complete three laps of a challenging 12.6km circuit around Burton Dassett and Farnborough on June 13.
Race director Mick Bennett said: “The support for the OVO Energy Women’s Tour in Warwickshire has been truly unforgettable and is something that riders have commented on year after year.
“Therefore, I’m delighted to announce that we’ll be returning to the county this June and this year’s stage promises to be even more exciting and unpredictable than our incredible previous visits.
“Historic Warwick will put on a spectacular show as it hosts the start while the climb through the picturesque Burton Dassett Country Park will prove a real test for our many competing Olympic, world and national champions!”
Upon leaving Warwick, the race’s star-studded field will pass through the University of Warwick, Kenilworth, Meriden – home to the National Cyclists’ Memorial, Bedworth and Wellesbourne before the finale.
Riders will climb race regular Edge Hill, from its south-westerly approach for the first time, before three laps of a clockwise finishing circuit around Burton Dassett and Farnborough.
Featuring a gradient of 15 per cent in places, and averaging 4.9 pre cent, the 1.7-kilometre climb through Burton Dassett Country Park has split the peloton into several groups previously but will play a crucial part in deciding who will win the OVO Energy green jersey this year.
Aside from the race’s London criterium in 2017, the finale will be the most times spectators will see the riders cross through the finish line mid-race during a single stage.
Warwickshire County Council chief executive Monica Fogarty said: “I am thrilled that Warwickshire will once again be hosting a stage of the OVO Energy Women’s Tour.
“As well as being fantastic entertainment for spectators, this event is of huge economic benefit to the region.
“It’s an opportunity for local businesses along the route to celebrate and embrace cycling as the race comes past their front door, as well as for others to maximise on business opportunities from increased customers and visitors.
“As in previous years, we are working to ensure that spectators can watch the race from multiple spots throughout the day.
“Each year, the response from local people is phenomenal, with businesses and schools coming out to watch, all adding to the great atmosphere.
“This year we hope even more people will support and enjoy this fabulous race which is watched by viewers across the planet.”
The 2019 Women’s Tour will take place over six days for the first time in event history, with Suffolk hosting the grand depart on June 10.
Oxfordshire welcomes the race for the first time two days later with a stage that culminates at Blenheim Palace.
The race continues to form part of the prestigious UCI Women’s WorldTour series.
Further details on the route and competing teams for the 2019 race will be announced in the coming weeks, organisers said.