Ingezonden

The Olympic Park will host the start of each day’s action (Getty Images)

A shortlist of six firms are in the running to organise next
year’s two-day London
cycling festival
.

Some huge names, including the owners of the Tour
de France, ASO, have thrown their hats into the ring for the event next August,
which hopes to attract over 100,000 cyclists across the weekend. It will be the first large scale
event to be held in the Olympic Park following the Games and if plans are followed
through, it’ll become the largest mass participation cycling event on the
planet.

The first day of the festival would involve a
family ride for up to 70,000 cyclists on an eight-mile loop of closed roads
around central London.
The following day up to 35,000 amateur, club and world class elite cyclists
will tackle a 100-mile course that will begin in the Olympic Park and be based
on much of the route of the 2012 Games cycle road race. Subject to UCI approval, the elite race will become part of the international calendar, giving Britain its very own ‘Classic’.

The six organisations, who have until mid-April to submit formal proposals, are listed below. A final decision will be made by the Mayor of London’s team before the start
of the Games.

  • Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO) – owners of the
    Tour de France
  • IMG – owners of the London Triathlon and the Etape
    Caledonia
  • Limelight Sports and Participate Sport (Joint
    Venture) – Limelight Sports are sub-contractors for the Olympic Road Cycling
    Race and Participate Sport are the organisers of Cycletta, the women only bike
    ride series
  • London Surrey Cycling Partnership – comprising
    the organisers of the London Marathon and SweetSpot Group (organisers of the
    Tour of Britain)
  • Nova International – owners of the Great North Run
    (and the new Great Manchester Cycle)
  • Upsolut – organisers of the Triathlon ITU World
    Championship

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “The
high quality of the shortlisted organisations is a clear demonstration of their
confidence in London’s
ability to host a world class cycle festival. With the Games just around the
corner, the investment to date is already paying off, and my team is hard at
work developing the events that will help us showcase our great city to the
world for many years to come”.

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