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Tour to go from Moor to Palace


British cities will be hosting parts of next year's Tour de France

British cities will be hosting parts of next year's Tour de France

British cities will be hosting parts of next year's Tour de France

The world's most famous bike race will take riders from Yorkshire's Ilkley Moor to the gates of Buckingham Palace in 2014, Tour de France organisers have said.

Details of the first three stages of the 101st Tour were confirmed in Paris.

The three days will start in Leeds, York and Cambridge and organisers also announced that the third stage will include the Olympic Park, in east London, before finishing in The Mall, like last year's Olympic road races.

The announcement outlined an opening stage, on July 5, 2014, which will begin outside Leeds's historic Town Hall. It will then cover 120 miles through some of the best known parts of the Yorkshire Dales and surrounding countryside.

Riders will pass famous Yorkshire locations including Harewood House and Ilkley Moor, and the first yellow jersey of the tour will be presented in Harrogate.

The second stage, which will be 125 miles long, includes perhaps the most famous climb in British cycling - up Holme Moss, near Huddersfield. It will also pass through Holmfirth, famous as the location of the long-running BBC comedy Last of the Summer Wine.

Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme said: "Yorkshire is a region of outstanding beauty, with breath-taking landscapes whose terrains offer both sprinters and attackers the opportunity to express themselves."

Chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire Gary Verity, who led Yorkshire's successful bid, said: "The routes of the Grand Depart will showcase some of Yorkshire's iconic cycling climbs and the county's stunning land and cityscapes.

"The peloton will be technically tested as they tackle some challenging terrain in what are sure to be two exhilarating days of racing in the county.

"The British public's response since the news broke that the 2014 Grand Depart would be hosted in Yorkshire has been overwhelming and I am sure the route announcements today will encourage even more people to come to the county to experience for themselves the phenomenon that is Le Tour."

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