Thousands Turnout For Tour
Thousands of people lined the streets of Mansfield on Saturday to welcome the Tour of Britain and 109 of the world’s top cyclists to the district for the second year in a row.
The Stage 7 winner, Ian Stannard, crossed the finish line shortly after 3.45pm after a rain and windswept 139-mile journey through Nottinghamshire from West Bridgford.
Other participants included the eventual Tour of Britain 2018 winner Julian Alaphilippe, and the biggest current names in cycling, this year's Tour de France champion Geraint Thomas and multi Tour de France winner and current Giro d’Italia winner, Chris Froome.
Despite the weather, spectators gathered at key points along the Mansfield route while the largest crowd lined the final kilometre down Chesterfield Road to the finish line outside the Civic Centre. Many wore Robin Hood hats, waved flags and banged the barriers to make as much noise as possible.
Cllr Dave Saunders, Portfolio Holder for Regeneration and Growth at Mansfield District Council, said: “For the second year in a row we have successfully demonstrated Mansfield’s ability to attract and host the Tour of Britain.
"This is exactly the kind of major event we hope to bring to Mansfield more often in the future – for the benefit of businesses, residents and visitors as part of the council's wider vision to put Mansfield on the map as a good place to live, work, visit, and invest in.
“Thank you to everyone who supported us in bringing the Tour of Britain to Mansfield again. Not only does it encourage people to get more active and bring the local community together, it also showcases Mansfield to a global audience.
“The first of our lasting legacies has already been created in the form of a wooden sculpture of a link from a bike’s chain but there are many more plans in the pipeline and these will be announced in due course.”
The Executive Mayor, Kate Allsop, presented the prize to Ian Stannard before cycling fans flocked to the Civic Centre car park in a bid to get selfies and autographs as the cyclists prepared to board their team buses for the journey to London.
Earlier in the day school children, women (as part of Mansfield Girls Can initiative) and families had the opportunity to cycle up and down the final 100m to the finish line ahead of the professionals.
The Summer Festival Finale in Chesterfield Road Park featured free entertainment for all the family including live music, lots of cycling-related activities and sports taster sessions as well as circus skills and face painting.
The council would like to thank residents, businesses and motorists for their patience and understanding during the unavoidable disruption created by hosting an event on this scale. It would also like to thank all the businesses and residents for their efforts in decorating the town with bikes, banners and bunting.
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