Advertisement

  1. ITV Report

The Tour of Britain - taking on our region's toughest climb

There's just over a week to go until the Tour of Britain gets underway, with Olympic heroes Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish confirmed among the competitors.

Three of the eight stages take in large parts of our region and in the run up to the event the Mayor of Bristol took on one of the more challenging routes in the city.

Our reporter Jonty Messer joined Marvin Rees on part of the route - which include Bridge Valley Road - a gruelling 0.6km climb which rises more than 60m.

But as Jonty found out - anything can happen when you're cycling - especially if you're about to go up a killer hill!

Once Jonty caught up the Mayor led from the front. Climbing the hill that this year's competitors will tackle once during the morning time trial and a further six times in the afternoon's circuit race.

When I got to the top I was thinking how it must feel emotionally to have to do another six laps, it's going to be a challenge when they come along the Portway.

It's great to have world class sports in Bristol, that's my mantra. We want world class sport, I want mass participation and all the benefits that come from that, improved health, improved self-esteem for Bristol and economic profile.

– Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol

Alongside the Mayor and I were members of Bristol's oldest cycling club, who were pretty impressed with his efforts:

So how long does it take to climb that gruelling hill? We put Jonty to the test...

  • We're not sure we could do any better!

Few will have forgotten the scenes from 2014 when the Tour last passed through the region. This time a whole day's racing will be based in Bristol. it's expected to generate £3.5 million.

The Tour of Britain last came to Bristol in 2014 Credit: ITV Sport

It's going to be an absolute brilliant day for cyclists, it's going to be a brilliant day for all the restaurants, hotels, cafes, public transport, taxis.

I can't see any negatives at the moment really. Someone might point out some, but let's hope the weather's ok for the cyclists because it's going to be hard coming up Bridge Valley Road seven times.

– John Hirst, Destination Bristol

The wider area is sure to benefit as well. Because on September the 8th Stage 5 takes competitors from Wales through Gloucestershire and into Bath.

Stage 6 takes on Devon, starting in Sidmouth and ending in Haytor.

And with Olympic success fresh in people's minds, the chance to see cycling royalty is sure to be a huge draw.