Edinburgh’s Royal Mile would host the 2017 Tour prologue (Andrew Milligan/PA Wire)

Officials representing Edinburgh’s bid to host the grand depart of the 2017 Tour de France were in Liège this weekend to step up their bid.

from EventScotland, British Cycling and UK Sport were looking to witness first hand what goes into staging the race, with Tour organisers ASO said to be impressed by initial plans of the path the race would follow.

details of their proposal are still being ironed out, but the prologue would be
staged in Edinburgh and take in landmarks such as Holyrood Palace, The
Scottish Parliament, the Royal Mile and Arthur’s Seat. Up to three further stages
are in the pipeline, running not just through Edinburgh and Scotland but through the “spine
of Britain”.

next steps will involve further engagement with local authorities throughout
Britain, as well as key bodies from the world’s of cycling, business and

Turner, International Events Director for EventScotland said: “The experience
in Liege this weekend was superb and has given us further insight into the
running of the Grand Depart, which will ultimately contribute to our final
plans. The most important thing for us is to develop a proposal that will
deliver a spectacular bike race for ASO and most importantly the riders, and I
am confident that the combined experience and knowledge of the partners
involved will achieve that. It would be unprecedented for Britain to host an
international event which reached so much of the country and so many people.”

plans may be complicated by Yorkshire submitting plans to host the opening
stages in 2016
. Their formal bid was announced in March this year and the odds of
Britain getting the grand depart two years on the trot are long. Should either
get the nod, it would be first time the race had visited British roads since

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