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Start and finish towns for 2024 Tour of Britain revealed

The Tour of Britain is not far away. Last autumn, Wout van Aert won the overall title after a week of dominance alongside his Jumbo-Visma teammate Olav Kooij. With two months to go until a new winner is crowned, British Cycling has announced the route for the 2024 edition.

The 2024 event, described as ‘Britain’s biggest free-to-attend sporting spectacle’, will start on Tuesday, September 3 at Kelso in the Scottish Borders and finish on Sunday, September 8 at Felixstowe in Suffolk. The race will head south across the south-east of Scotland. The six-day race will pass through North Yorkshire, Sheffield, Northamptonshire and East Anglia during race week, with a stage yet to be confirmed.

This will be the first edition of the men’s race since the organisation is taken over by British Cycling at the end of 2023. It means it will be the first men’s Tour of Britain led by new race director Rod Ellingworth, former team director at Ineos and the British Olympic team.

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Tour de Britain 2024: Important information

Cyclists ride up the hill in the shade of treesCyclists ride up the hill in the shade of trees
James York

History: Tuesday 3 September – Sunday 8 September 2024
Beginning: Kelso, Scotland
Come to an end: Felixstowe, England
UK television broadcasts: ITV4, Eurosport, Discovery+
Television broadcasts elsewhere: Eurosport (Europe, Asia and Oceania), Discovery+ (Europe, Asia, Oceania and North America), L’Équipe (France), RTVC (Colombia), Starzplay (North Africa), SuperSport (Sub-Saharan Africa)

Tour of Britain 2024 route

The 2024 Tour of Britain will be six stages long. This means it will be the shortest Tour of Britain since 2007 (excluding the 2022 race, which was abandoned early due to the death of Queen Elizabeth II). Host city information for five of the six stages has now been released. We await further information on the location of Stage 4.

Based on this update, the Tour will visit England and Scotland, skipping Wales, where half of the races are held in the Women’s Tour of Britain in June. The race will also take place mostly in the north of Great Britain.

There will be no time trial, The race won’t end with a city centre stage in Manchester, London or Glasgow, but it will feature a cobbled finish, steep hills and windy roads. Yes please.

Tour of Britain 2024 stage-by-stage preview

three cyclists ride through the crowdthree cyclists ride through the crowd
Matt Grayson

Stage 1: Tuesday 3 September, Kelso – Kelso

Scotland returns to Tour of Britain after a year-long break from men’s racing track.

The race will start in Kelso, the hometown of DSM-Firmenich-PostNL driver Oscar Onley. The route and stage type are currently unknown, but the cobbled market square will host the start and finish. The final stage of the race will take place on a track.

Jayco-AlUla have had success with their predecessors at Kelso in the past, with Caleb Ewan winning in the town in 2017 and Matteo Trentin picking up a win here in 2019.

As a bit of local lore, Kelso is a sister city to the town of Orchies, located in a cobbled section of the northern hemisphere of Paris-Roubaix.

Stage 2: Wednesday 4 September, Darlington – Redcar

Stage 2 heads into England, starting in Darlington. The stage will cross the Tees Valley, visiting Saltburn Bank, the hill that has marked the previous two British Nationals, along the way. The North Moors provide some bumps on the profile before rejoining the North Sea coast towards the finish.

The stage will finish in the steelmaking town of Redcar, with race organisers confirming the finish will take place on the North Yorkshire town’s seafront.

Cyclists pass by roller coasterCyclists pass by roller coaster
James York

Stage 3: Thursday 5 September, Sheffield – Barnsley

The third leg of the race starts in Sheffield, South Yorkshire. Home of Arctic Monkeys, Adam Blythe and Michael Palin, Sheffield has hosted the Tour de France and the Tour de Britain for the past two decades. This will be Sheffield’s big return to cycling as the city has not hosted a stage of Britain’s premier stage race since 2006.

Organisers have hinted that Stage 3 is likely to be a “tough leg” through the Peak District and Yorkshire Moors. But the finish is almost certain to be in Barnsley. The South Yorkshire town – birthplace of England international footballer John Stones – has never hosted a stage of the Tour of Britain, but it has hosted stages of the now defunct Tour of Yorkshire.

Stage 4: Friday, September 6, TBC – TBC

Don’t worry, TBC isn’t a secret new-build city in the Midlands – details of Phase 4 have yet to be revealed.

We’re waiting to see where it could be. If we were to guess, it’s probably somewhere between Yorkshire and Northamptonshire. Maybe it’s Lincolnshire or Nottinghamshire.

Cyclists ride on the beach among the crowdsCyclists ride on the beach among the crowds
James York

Stage 5: Saturday 7 September, Northampton – Northampton

The penultimate stage, Stage 5, will start and finish in Northampton. The town will be hosting the men’s Tour of Britain for the first time this year. It has previously featured in the women’s Tour. Emma Johansson won a stage there in the inaugural edition of the race in 2014.

Organisers tell us the stage will take place around West Northamptonshire. This part of the county is incredibly flat, so expect a sprint stage on the penultimate day of the race.

Stage 6: Sunday 8 September, Lowestoft – Felixstowe

Finally, the race will travel a few hours to Suffolk for the closing stage of the 2024 Tour of Britain. The day will start in Lowestoft, the most easterly town in the UK, and finish in Felixstowe. In fact, the arrival will be the same as Stage 5 of last year’s Tour of Britain, won by Wout van Aert. Given Suffolk’s flat terrain, expect another group gallop to the finish line.

Watch out for the East Anglian winds, there is a real chance that last minute adjustments could affect the sixth and final stage.

‘The best of Britain’s character and terrain’

James York

The route has been met with positive feedback online, with some social media commentators appearing upset that the south-east of England has once again been omitted from the route, but the return to Scotland has been well received.

British Cycling’s events director Jonathan Day said after the route was announced earlier today: ‘We are delighted to be bringing top-level racing and the joy of cycling to communities across the country in September. Over six stages we will showcase the best of Britain’s character and terrain.’

More details on the Tour of Britain coming soon. Cyclist will preview the full event closer to the race.