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100 days until the start of the Tour de France - in Yorkshire

Preparations for the start of the Tour de France in Yorkshire. Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

It is one hundred days until the world-famous cycle race, the Tour de France, comes to Yorkshire.

And to celebrate the countdown, a number of festival events are taking place.

Yorkshire will host the Grand Depart, the first two stages of the tour on the 5 and 6 of July.

Tonight (March 27) a gala dinner is being held in the grounds of Ripon Cathedral.

Other events will include installations in the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and the world premiere of "Velorama", a specially commissioned feature length documentary about the history of the bicycle.

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Le Tour boss "excited" for Grand Départ

On announcing the route Christian Prudhomme, director of Le Tour, said:

"We are excited to take Le Tour back to Britain again. I know the Grand Départ in Yorkshire will be visually stunning and technically challenging and the third stage from the cycling city of Cambridge to the historic heart of London will provide a fitting finale.

"The British cycling fans are passionate people and I am sure they will line the routes of the three stages cheering the teams and riders all the way from Yorkshire to London, providing an unforgettable start to the 2014 Tour."

– Christian Prudhomme, Director of Le Tour

World to "beam in" on Richmondshire

The route for the UK leg of next year's Tour de France has been unveiled in Paris today.

The cyclists will ride through Richmondshire in North Yorkshire for 48 miles, passing though Aysgarth, Hawes, Reeth, Leyburn and Middleham.

Councillor John Blackie, Leader of Richmondshire District Council, said:

"Today marks the start of the countdown to the Tour coming to Richmondshire and the day when the world will beam in on what we have to offer here.

"Our communities are already working hard to make our stage the very best for everyone - local residents, local businesses, riders, backroom staff and estimated visitors lining the route, and a global and web audience of some 3.5 million.

"The tour travels through the stunning scenery of the Upper Dales - what a wonderful backdrop to present to the world. And we hope it will also inspire people to get on their own bikes and take up cycling as a hobby or a sport.

"On top of this is the warm welcome our communities always extend to visitors, where local people go out of their way to ensure they have a great time during their stay here."

– Cllr John Blackie, Leader of Richmondshire District Council
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Stage 2: Tour De France in detail

The second stage of the 2014 Tour De France will depart from York Racecourse on July 6.

The 200km route will head north, through the city, going past the Grand Opera House before turning west along the A59 Roman Road.

After passing Knaresborough, the riders will pass north of Harrogate, onto Bolton Abbey, then turning south to Keighley, Haworth and Hebden Bridge.

Cyclists will then pass through Huddersfield and Holmfirth, then tackle the climb of Holme Moss, which has become a staple of cycle races in Yorkshire.

After passing through the Peak District National Park, the race heads south-east towards Hillsborough.

The race will finish in Sheffield, although the final finish point is yet to be revealed.

Click here for the full route

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