Tour de Yorkshire cancelled again as Welcome To Yorkshire organisers struggle to afford it

Next year’s Tour de Yorkshire cycling spectacular has been cancelled.

The decision comes after lengthy discussions between race organisers Welcome to Yorkshire and ASO (Amaury Sport Organisation) over many months.

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They say a combination of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and “escalating financial challenges” led to an agreed mutual view that next year’s event would be unviable.

Launched in 2015 following the success of bringing the Tour De France’s Grand Depart to Yorkshire, the race visited East Yorkshire for five years, attracting huge crowds with Beverley and Bridlington both hosting high-profile starts and finishes to different stages.

Huge crowds fill Beverley's Saturday Market for the Tour de Yorkshire men's race
Huge crowds fill Beverley’s Saturday Market for the Tour de Yorkshire men’s race

The region’s links with the race were secured in a sponsorship deal with East Riding Council.

The council had pledged another £100,000 towards the cost of staging next year’s event after it was cancelled in 2020 because of Covid-19 and then again this year.

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Welcome to Yorkshire’s chief executive James Mason said: “This has been an intense period of back and forth discussions about the 2022 Tour de Yorkshire over many months.

“The race is a much-loved international sports event which showcases Yorkshire across the globe and so many people involved in the decision making process understand just how popular the race is.

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“We had every intention for the race to go ahead but unfortunately some of the circumstances were out of our control and sometimes you have to make big calls for the right reasons.

“People from Yorkshire are proud and we only want the best for the county. We still have ambitions for large events going forward to put Yorkshire on the world stage and we will continue to work with our partners to plan for those.”

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Welcome to Yorkshire chairman Peter Box said: “The last 18 months have seen turbulent times for many businesses and for tourism, with financial restrictions which must be addressed and considered in all decision-making processes.”

ASO’s chief executive Yann Le Moenner said: “After two back-to-back cancellations due to the Covid-19 pandemic and considering economic factors, some of which result from it, it has been decided by mutal agreement that the Tour de Yorkshire will not be organised in 2022.”

The Tour de Yorkshire in Bridlington in 2015
The Tour de Yorkshire in Bridlington in 2015

Brian Facer, chief executive of British Cycling, said: “Clearly this is disappointing news for everyone who recognises the value the Tour de Yorkshire brings to the county and to cycling in Britain.

“The local authorities in Yorkshire have done a fantastic job over recent years and deserve credit for trying to find a way forward.

“We will continue to work with Welcome to Yorkshire and ASO to secure major cycling events in the future.”