Town in top gear as it plans Tour activities

A map of the Tour de Yorkshire route on Thursday 3 May.
A map of the Tour de Yorkshire route on Thursday 3 May.

A number of organisations are staging events to celebrate the visit of this year’s Tour de Yorkshire to Pocklington today (Thursday 3 May) – including the town council.

There will be a big screen for spectators to enjoy both the ladies and mens races on Market Place outside Cooplands.

Other attractions include BMX bike stuntman Will Ackerley, the Magic Carpet Theatre, the local Yarn Bombers, and lots of food stalls.

Magic Carpet Theatre will be coming to town with some bikes and it will be letting people have a go on them.

There will be secure bike parking behind Pane e Vino, looked after by a security guard and flags are available from the town council offices.

The town centre parking in Market Place and Market Street is suspended for the day. However, there will be free parking on West Green field.

Pocklington’s All Saints Church is opening up on Tour de Yorkshire day to serve tea, coffee and refreshments between 11am and 3.30pm. There’s also a book stall to peruse ahead of the race.

Local historian Phil Gilbank is hosting the ‘History of Cycling in Pocklington’ exhibition at the church, which focuses on the Pocklington Cycling Club – one of the town’s leading organisations 1891-1930.

There will also be pictures on show of the 2017 Tour.

The churchyard will also provide a grandstand view of the cyclists as they flash by.

As well as the local activities, the Tour’s publicity caravan will be handing out freebies and keepsakes in Pocklington around 1.50pm.

Cycling fans will also be able to meet some of the legends of the sport – this year’s Tour de Yorkshire ambassadors.

This year the popular race peloton comes through Warter, Pocklington, Allerthorpe, Melbourne, Seaton Ross and Holme on Spalding Moor.

The men’s race starts at Beverley at 1.50pm before proceeding to Hornsea.

The peloton will then tackle a 16km loop before heading back through Beverley at 2:59pm and into the Yorkshire Wolds.

The first classified climb at Baggaby Hill (4.07pm) will get the cyclists’ legs pumping before starting a brisk descent into Pocklington for the opening intermediate sprint at around 4:12pm.

After passing the feed zone at Holme on Spalding Moor (4:44pm) the pace will gradually ramp up again for a second sprint in Howden at 4:59pm.

It’s then full steam into Doncaster on the newly opened Great Yorkshire Way with the first day’s race finishing at around 6.20pm.

The women’s opening stage gets going in Beverley at 8:40pm and will follow the same route as the men once they have returned to Beverley.

The women will contest the Cote de Baggaby Hill at 9:53am just before the first intermediate sprint comes in Pocklington at 9:57am. The second sprint in Howden should take place at 10:50am and the action is scheduled to reach its conclusion in Doncaster at 12:19pm.

Timings have been calculated by anticipating the peloton’s average speed but are subject to change depending on variables such as wind speed, direction and how aggressively the riders race.

A Town Council spokesman said: “We will be screening the race in the centre of town and hopefully the weather will be kind. We have had some flags made for the event and people can pop into the council offices to pick one up.

“If the weather holds we expect the day to be as good as last year, even better.”