Ten additional kilometres of racing over hard terrain will face the competitors in the 13th Rutland – Melton International CiCLE Classic on Sunday 23rd April as two passages of Stapleford Park are added to the final 25 kilometres of the already challenging course.
Following on from the inclusion of a new climb and rough section of road announced previously just outside Oakham to the new route of the race for 2017, the addition of Stapleford Park in the final 25 kms of racing is regarded as a major revamp of the course which will produce an even greater test for the international field of nearly 200 competitors.
With eight foreign based international teams already registered for the 2017 CiCLE Classic demand for places in the event, regarded as the highlight of the British Spring cycling calendar is expected to be higher than ever.
“We are always looking at ways to develop the race”, said Race Director Colin Clews, ”and we are extremely grateful to the Gretton Estate and the management of Stapleford Park Hotel for allowing us to include in the course for the first time ever the spectacular grounds of Stapleford Park and hotel, and taking in the landscape created by Capability Brown. Not that we expect our competitors to be able to take in its splendours, although their accompanying car bound team staff may surely make time to do so.”
Having hosted golf tournaments and other top class sporting activities in the Park, Stapleford Park Hotel is no stranger to sports events, but this will be the first time ever that a cycle race of any type has passed through the grounds, and along what will be a completely new 2.2 kms off road section of the CiCLE Classic course.
Additionally, for 2017 the race has taken the step of choosing as its adopted local charity, The Mount Group, Riding for the Disabled (RDA) based at Somerby Equestrian Centre.
“The work of the Mount Group in providing opportunities for less able children and adults to experience the enjoyment of horse riding is tremendously rewarding, deserving widespread recognition and support. That they are based in Somerby, in the heart of our CiCLE Classic courses, makes them an ideal candidate for us to adopt as our chosen charity”, said CiCLE Classics Race Director Colin Clews. He continued, ”Over the 13 years that the races have operated we have greatly appreciated the cooperation of the local stables and equestrian community whose usual roads and tracks we have the privilege of using on race days. By supporting The Mount Group RDA in this way we hope that we are giving back to a community who have enabled the race’s success. We hope that by promoting the work of the group, we can also help educate the wider cycling community to respect horse riders when encountering them on their regular rides.”
The collaboration with The Mount Group RDA is intended to take the form of offering opportunities for raising awareness of the work of the group, by advertising them alongside the races, and providing opportunities for the Group to raise much needed regular funds to enable their valuable work to continue and expand.
The associated Rutland CiCLE Tour sportif events starting and finishing at the CiCLE Classic race sponsors Giant Store premises at Normanton will once again be held on Saturday 22nd April the day prior to the International race and expect to draw in over 1500 cyclists to the area.
With the 2nd edition of the Women’s professional CiCLE Classic being held on Sunday 4th June, alongside the 4th Junior Men’s CiCLE Classic. Both these events will start and finish in Melton town Centre.
Title sponsors of the International CiCLE Classic for 2017 will remain as Giant (Rutland Water) and Schwalbe UK, with support from Dare2b, supported by Melton BID, Melton Building Society,
Colin Clews, MSc. Race Director.
3rd January 2017
Tel: +(44) 07979 85 6262
The Rutland – Melton CiCLE Classic was first held in 2005 and after spending two years as a purely British domestic race quickly moved to International status, as a UCI class 1.2 race. As such it is the longest established international one day race in Britain and also holds the record for the most competitors ever to take part in a race on British soil with around 180 riders taking to the roads of East Leicestershire and Rutland each April.
The race is unique in the UK in that it involves many off road sections within its now 189 kms (117miles) course. In doing so it sets out to mimic the style and atmosphere of racing that is normally associated with the major Spring Classic one day races of Northern Europe.