Star names confirmed for road race
2012 world road race champion Philippe Gilbert heads the list of the first riders to be confirmed for the Prudential RideLondon- Surrey Classic which come through Wimbledon on Sunday August 10.
The Belgian, who has won the likes of Liege-Bastogne-Liege, the Amstel Gold Race and the Tour of Lombardy, among a host of other titles, leads the BMC Racing team as he returns to race in Britain for the first time since the 2012 Olympics.
Gilbert (left) is one of several star names to be confirmed for the 200-kilometre race, which will zoom through Wimbledon town centre.
The list also includes David Millar – who was devastated to miss out on selection for the Tour de France - in his final season of racing on the road.
Millar’s Garmin Sharp teammate Dan Martin, like Gilbert a former winner of the Liege-Bastogne-Liege classic, will also compete as he returns to racing after a crash in the Giro d’Italia in May.
There will be further British interest as Ben Swift, a top 10 finisher in last year’s event, returns with Team Sky, while fans will also have a chance to cheer on rising international star Simon Yates, who made a big impression in his Tour de France debut with two breakaways in mountain stages, in action with Orica GreenEDGE.
Joining Simon will be twin brother Adam, winner of the Tour of Turkey earlier this summer, with Prudential RideLondon set to be one of his final events before making his Grand Tour debut at the Vuelta a Espana later in August.
The revised route for 2014, which includes multiple circuits in the Surrey Hills and additional sections of the 2012 Olympic Road Race route, such as the climb of Staple Lane, could produce a more aggressive race and favour the likes of Gilbert and Martin.
At the same time, several top sprinters such as Elia Viviani (Cannondale Pro Cycling), 2013 Milan San Remo winner Gerald Ciolek (MTN Qhubeka) and rising Irish star Sam Bennett (Team NetApp Endura) will all be hoping that the race comes down to a bunch sprint on The Mall in St James’s Park.
The race will be covered live on BBC1 and British Eurosport and shown internationally in more than 160 countries worldwide.
Prior to the big race, around 24,000 amateur riders set off to take on the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100, through the capital out into the leg-testing Surrey Hills and into Wimbledon before returning to finish on The Mall.
Many famous faces are participating, raising funds for charity, including:
• former World Cup-winning rugby captain Martin Johnson
• 1987 Tour de France winner Stephen Roche
• Olympic pursuit gold medallist Chris Boardman
• Winter Olympics skeleton champion Amy Williams
• Paralympic 800m gold medallist Danny Crates
• The Only Way is Essex star Lydia Bright
• TV chefs Jean-Christophe Novelli and John Torode.
Two celebrity waves are set to start at 6.40am and 7.40am.
The subsequent races start and finish at:
8.30am: Prudential RideLondon Handcycle Classic Starts in Kingston.
Thirty of the world’s top para-cyclists set off on a 15-mile race from Kingston to the The Mall with Austria's Walter Ablinger defending his title. They are due to finish in The Mall at around 9.05am.
10am: The first rider in the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 crosses the finish line in The Mall.
1pm: Prudential RideLondon-Surrey Classic starts, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
6pm: The winner of the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey Classic crosses the finish line.
August 5, 2014