More than 2,000 people will take to their bikes when one of the UK’s most respected and established cycling events, the Virgin Money Cyclone Festival of Cycling, returns to the North East next week.
A three-day festival event, the Virgin Money Cyclone sees cyclists of all ages and abilities take to some of Newcastle and Northumberland’s most scenic roads and cycleways in celebration of a the sport.
Festivities open on Friday June 19 on the banks of the River Tyne with family ride, the Tyne Six Bridges, starting and finishing at the Cycle Hub. Awarded freestyle mountain bike stunt team, Savage Skills, will wow crowds with a free live demonstration. Those inspired to get pedalling can take part in a Rollapaluza race where participants ride a mounted bike to the fastest 500m sprint, while local trader Kielder Organic Meats will dish up summertime favourites to mark the start of the festival weekend.
Saturday June 20 sees riders assemble at the Newcastle Falcons Rugby Club, Kingston Park, for the annual Virgin Money Cyclone Challenge rides. Scores of spectators line the Challenge ride routes that trace the path of professional cyclists ahead of Sunday’s competitive races. The village of Stamfordham comes to life with the Virgin Money Cyclone, a hive of activity with community groups running popular fundraising stalls.
The Virgin Money Cyclone picks up pace on Sunday June 21, the official start of summer and a day of serious race spectating for the North East. Over 200 riders – including some of the world’s best – will contest internationally recognised men’s event, the Beaumont Trophy, and Women’s National Road Race, the Curlew Cup. Past years’ winners include Dame Sarah Storey and Sir Bradley Wiggins, who this year brings his British Continental team to race the Beaumont Trophy for the first time.
Virgin Money Cyclone Festival of Cycling Founder and Organiser, Peter Harrison, said: “I’m overwhelmed each year by the amount of people who turn out to celebrate cycling and support people riding in Virgin Money Cyclone events.
“With so many world-class athletes on the starting line for Sunday and in the region training in the days leading up to their events, it’s a fantastic chance for local people to see some of the country’s sporting heroes in action in the North East.”
The Virgin Money Cyclone Festival of Cycling returns to Newcastle and Northumberland June 19 – 21. For full event information and to plan your festival weekend, visit www.virginmoneycyclone.co.uk