Tour of Britain cancelled with planned 2020 route used in 2021

Mathieu van der Poel (centre) won the 2019 edition of the Tour of Britain

The Tour of Britain has been cancelled for 2020 because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The race was due to take place between 6-13 September but there are concerns over holding public events because of the spread of the virus.

The Women’s Tour stage race in Britain and the Tour de Yorkshire have also been cancelled for 2020.

Organisers say the 2021 Tour of Britain will be held between 5-12 September and use the route planned for 2020.

The cancellation means Britain will not host any major stage races this year.

The RideLondon-Surrey Classic is the only major race is still scheduled, on 16 August.

Tour of Britain organisers said holding the event without spectators would “go against everything that cycling, as an accessible sport, stands for”.

“Holding the Tour of Britain behind closed doors or with extensive social distancing rules would not only be immensely impractical, but would rob our venues and spectators of these opportunities,” a statement read.

There will be no professional sport, even behind closed doors, in England until 1 June, with social distancing measures still in force.

The 2019 Tour of Britain, which was won by Dutchman Mathieu van der Poel, attracted 1.5 million spectators.

The full route for the 2020 race had not been announced, but it was set to visit Cornwall, Devon, Warrington, Cumbria and finish in Aberdeen.

“It is disappointing to hear of the postponement but it feels like the correct decision has been taken,” leader of Aberdeenshire Council Jim Gifford said.

“The team can now begin to focus their efforts on next year.”

Organisers added they would explore how the Tour of Britain venues can still celebrate the event in September.

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