Wheeling into the north-east this weekend, here is everything you need to know about the UK’s biggest cycle race, the Tour of Britain.
Families turning out to cheer on cyclists as they tackle the races last stage can look forward to a whole host of fun.
Large crowds are expected to gather as 120 world-class cyclists race to the finish line at the beach in Aberdeen.
Due to the event’s magnitude, road closures will begin in Aberdeenshire from the night before the riders even set off.
The B974 Cairn O’Mount road, the highlight of the stage and where many spectators are expected to attend, will be closed from 6 pm on Saturday until the peloton passes on Sunday.
In what he described as the “hardest feat” of his life, our very own Jamie Hall took on the mountainous path in anticipation of the event.
The rest of the route will be covered with a series of rolling road closures along the Aberdeenshire section before the Tour of Britain finally arrives in Aberdeen.
Parking restrictions will also be in force in villages along the route, including Aboyne, Auchenblae, Westhill, Ballater and Westhill.
What roads will be closed in Aberdeen?
Beach Esplanade, between King Street and Beach Boulevard, will be shut from 6 pm on Saturday until midnight on Sunday night.
The remaining closures will be from 2pm until 4pm on Sunday.
Skene Road, between Westhill and Queens Road
Queens Road, between Skene Road and Carden Place
Anderson Drive, at Queens Road roundabout
Queens Cross roundabout
Carden Place, between Queens Road and Skene Street
Skene Street, between Carden Place and Woolmanhill roundabout
Skene Square, between Woolmanhill Roundabout and Caroline Place
Hutcheon Street, between Berryden Road and Mounthooly roundabout
King Street, between Nelson Street and Ellon Road
Ellon Road, between King Street and Balgownie Road
What time will it be on?
Racers will start at 10.30am on Sunday from Stonehaven leisure centre and are expected to arrive at the finish line before 3pm.
Those of you not making your way out to the course to cheer on your favourite cyclists can watch from home live on ITV4.
Who will be racing
Fan favourites Mark Cavendish, who has won the most stages in modern Tour of Britain history, and reigning UCI road world champion Julian Alaphilippe will head up the Deceuninck – Quick-Step team.
But there will also be the chance to see Tokyo 2020 medallists Wout van Aert, Ethan Hayter and Rohan Dennis whiz by, along with five national road-race champions.
A total of 20 nationalities will also also be represented at the event, which was cancelled last year due to Covid-19.
— AJ Bell Tour of Britain 🇬🇧 (@TourofBritain) September 10, 2021
Yesterday Wout van Aert pipped GB cyclist Ethan Hayter to the top spot in Gateshead.
It marks the German cyclist’s third victory throughout the tour.
Chris Foy, chief executive of Visit Aberdeenshire, said: “On Sunday, spectators will see some of the world’s cycling superstars come to the region in what promises to be an exciting finale to the spectacular Tour of Britain.
“With a nationwide TV audience watching, we have every confidence that the stunning Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire scenery will inspire future visits by cyclists from across the UK.”
Family fun at the Tour of Britain in Aberdeen
Open from 10.30am to 4pm, there will be entertainment acts, games, a bike track and obstacle course, a climbing wall and even Sustran’s pedal powdered cinema.
Families and friends can also try out battery-powered electrical vehicles and Ninebot go-karts or take in a BMX stunt show at 11.30am, 1pm or 2.30pm.
There will also be various stalls promoting sustainable travel, and the Bike Doctor will be on hand to service attendees’ bikes.
Grampian District Pipe and Drums will be performing throughout the day, while Graham Benson will be doing unicycle displays as the Balloon Mannies impress with their creations.
City council leader Jenny Laing said: “The Getabout Activity Village will create a fantastic atmosphere as we await the elite cyclists. The activity programme is designed to appeal to all ages with a great family feel, and we are delighted to welcome both residents and visitors.
“As well as being a great celebration of cycling, the Tour of Britain will have a huge part to play in our post-Covid economic recovery plans.”
First dose Covid jabs to be made available at the finale
NHS Grampian has also announced its Covid vaccination team will be at the activity village throughout the day to give anyone aged 16 or over their first jab.
Health workers will be at the special activity village to be set up for the event in the Queens Links and Beach Esplanade area.
NHS Grampian will be administering first doses for anyone over 16 years old between 10.30 am and 4 pm on Sunday.