SweetSpot unimpressed by Tour of Britain organisation being put out to tender by British Cycling
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Friday, December 07, 2012

SweetSpot unimpressed by Tour of Britain organisation being put out to tender by British Cycling

by VeloNation Press at 5:25 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour of Britain
 
Rumours Tour de France organiser ASO might be interested in bidding for race

Jon Tiernan LockeHaving organised the Tour of Britain since 2004 – the year it resurrected the race – SweetSpot Group has reacted with frustration to the news that British Cycling has put the running of the race out to tender.

The federation released a statement today saying that it would put the race out to open tender ‘to decide who will take it forward from 2014 onwards.’

It’s president Brian Cookson OBE said that after the strong results of the season just finished, it was time to decide how the race would go forward.

“Against the backdrop of our continued success over recent years and the amazing success this summer with our first Tour de France winner and 16 gold medals at London 2012, it’s important that we take a fresh look at how the Tour of Britain can deliver continued growth and profile for the sport.

“Sweetspot has nurtured and developed the event over recent years but the time is now right to assess all options. Most crucially, we want to assure our current and future members and all cycling fans that we will have their interests at heart throughout this process and we look forward to further developing an event that reflects the current status of our sport in this country.”

It has been rumoured that Tour de France organisers ASO might be interested in taking over the race.

SweetSport said today that it wanted to express ‘surprise and disappointment’ at the news.

It said that it fully intended to participate in the tender process, in order to “retain the right to organise and promote Britain’s biggest professional road race from 2014 onwards, especially given the continued growth and unparalled success of the event under their ten-year stewardship.”

Laying out its arguments as to why it should be able to continue running the Tour of Britain, it stated that it had succeeded in both growing the event and raising its profile despite one of the worst recessions in living memory.

It also said that a huge amount of work was done to make the race what it is. “The team at SweetSpot have created unrivaled relationships with stakeholders around the country, including the police, highway authorities and the regions, counties, cities and towns into which The Tour of Britain has been invited.

“Not only have new sponsors been introduced to the sport in Britain, but media coverage in all forms has been stimulated, including live daily television coverage on a UK and global platform.

“By guaranteeing the inclusion of British teams, The Tour has been a catalyst for the development of cycling in this country over the past decade.”

It added that it would announce both the details of the 2013 race and also the Tour Series early next year.

This year’s Tour of Britain was arguably the most successful edition, enjoying huge crowds, strong TV coverage and the first-ever home winner of the modern race, Endura Racing’s Jon Tiernan Locke.

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