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12 October 2016, 16:45
Yorkshire's playing host to ANOTHER huge cycling event - the 2019 UCI Road World Championships.
The county - which hosted the Tour de France Grand Depart in 2014 and has subsequently twice held a three-day stage race - was chosen to host the 2019 event.
Yorkshire's formal bid - submitted by national governing body British Cycling and made in partnership with Welcome to Yorkshire, funding body UK Sport and the Government - was announced in August by Prime Minister Theresa May.
Racing would take place in North, South, East and West Yorkshire, Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive Sir Gary Verity has said, with decisions over the race routes for the week-long event to be made in conjunction with the UCI.
The first direct arena, Trinity Leeds shopping centre, and English Heritage's Clifford's Tower in York will be lit up in the colours of the UCI rainbow stripes tonight to celebrate!
The last time the competition was in the UK was in 1982.
Sir Gary Verity, Chief Executive of Welcome To Yorkshire, said:
"We have got the scenery, the crowds, and the warm welcome, and we are sure the world's best riders will love the challenging roads we have to offer.''
The Government will underwrite the Road World Championships with £24million of investment while UK Sport will provide £3m of National Lottery funding for the event.
British Cycling negotiated a £15million package of nationwide investment alongside the bid, to further develop cycling facilities and grow participation.
This funding will provide for 27 purpose-built cycle-sport facilities across the disciplines.
Many of these would be closed-road circuits - for riding away from motor vehicles - but there would also be outdoor velodromes, BMX tracks and mountain bike trails.
British Cycling chief executive Ian Drake said:
"To get £15m to invest in cycle sport facilities is massive and will truly leave a lasting legacy for this event.
"While we've been building dozens of new facilities over the last decade, this is an opportunity to ensure that every area of Britain has close access to a closed-road circuit, velodrome, BMX track or mountain bike trail.
"This is transformational for the sport and will inspire thousands of people to take up cycling.''
The 2017 Road World Championships take place in Bergen, Norway and the 2018 event is hosted by Innsbruck-Tirol, Austria.