Women's Tour to return to Daventry

Daventry hosted the start of last year's Women's Tour
Daventry hosted the start of last year's Women's Tour

The OVO Energy Women's Tour will return to Daventry this year with the town hosting the finish to the second stage of the race.

On Thursday, June 14 the rides will set off from Rushden before cycling 145km to the finish line in Daventry.

The 145km Stage Two of the Women's Tour starts in Rushden and finishes in Daventry

The 145km Stage Two of the Women's Tour starts in Rushden and finishes in Daventry

The 2018 edition of the Women's Tour will mark the fifth year that the world's top cyclists have returned to Northamptonshire, which hosted the first ever stage of the race in 2014.

Councillor Alan Hills, Daventry District Council's community, culture and leisure portfolio holder, said: "We are delighted to be hosting the finish of this year's Northamptonshire stage of the OVO Energy Women's Tour, having staged the Grand Depart so successfully last year.

"There is sure to be a lot of excitement around the event once again, and this year offers a further chance for us all to capitalise on the opportunities to boost local businesses and inspire people to take up sport and exercise.

"We are looking forward to working with our partners, as well as communities and businesses in our district, to make this year's event an even greater success.”

The race runs from June 13 to June 17

The race runs from June 13 to June 17

The route from Rushden will take the cyclists, potentially including Northamptonshire sisters Hannah and Alice Barnes of the Canyon//SRAM team, on a new route to the south of the county, passing through Wollaston, Salcey Forest, Silverstone and Weedon Bec.

Race director Mick Bennett said: "After hosting last year's Grand Depart, we are thrilled to return to Northamptonshire for stage two of the OVO Energy Women's Tour, the fifth time in as many editions that the county has welcomed the event.

"This year we welcome a new stage start in Rushden, a town that has been keen to host the race for many years.

"We know from our previous visits that the locals will turn out in force for the race, especially on the gruelling Newnham Hill climb – situated just a few kilometres south of the finish in Daventry – which could well decide the winner of the stage.”

Riders will tackle the one-kilometre climb of Newnham Hill, which averages 7 per cent, twice either side of passing through Daventry, the second time with just over three kilometres of the race remaining in what is sure to set up an exciting finale.

Daventry will host a finish for the first time with the stage also including a spectator friendly finishing circuit for the first time, while Rushden makes its debut on the route of the UCI Women's WorldTour event.

In total 17 teams will compete in the Women's Tour, including four British squads, Wiggle HIGH5, Trek Drops, WNT Rotor and Storey Racing, with the riders set to compete in the race being announced during the early summer.

A one-hour highlights programme of every stage will be broadcast daily on ITV4 and Eurosport and available on demand via the ITV Hub and Eurosport Player. The Women's Tour is a part of the UCI Women's WorldTour, comprising 23 events around the world in 10 different countries.

● Stage One, Wednesday, June 13, Framlingham to Southwold, 130km

● Stage Two, Thursday, June 14, Rushden to Daventry, 145km

● Stage Three, Friday, June 15, Atherstone to Royal Leamington Spa, 151km

● Stage Four, Saturday, June 16, Wychavon District to Worcester, 130km

● Stage Five, Sunday, June 17, Dolgellau to Colwyn Bay, 122km