Plans for 2016 Lincoln Festival of Cycling announced

For many sports fans, the city of Lincoln’s sporting dynamic is defined by something other than the occurrences associated with Lincoln City Football Club.

The foundations of the city’s hunger for sport were certainly built at Sincil Bank but were all the more enhanced 60 years ago, when the Lincoln Grand Prix cycle race was born.

road race pic january

Mark Cavendish and Pete Kennaugh tackle the infamous Michaelgate climb at the National Championships last year (Photo: ©Phil Crow 2015 www.philcrow.com )

After a year absence, with the city hosting the National Road Cycling Championships last season, the competition is back by popular demand, and its itinerary will have cycling enthusiasts counting the days until next May.

The National Championships brought a number of new additions, some of which were
completely new for the city, but spectators can expect to see some of those features next year.

Chief Organiser, Dan Ellmore said: “Before 2015, the Lincoln Grand Prix was a stand-alone race on a Sunday morning, with an elite men’s race and there has been, associated with that, a cycle sportive on the Saturday.

“In 2015, when we had the National Championships in Lincoln, we extended the programme with multiple events. For 2016, we’re retaining most of the components from the year before, with the exception of the time trial.

“On Friday we’ll have the Criterium, then on Saturday we’ll have the Sportive in the afternoon and the Uphill Dash in the evening and then on Sunday, we’ll have the Women’s Grand Prix, which we’ve never done before, and then the Men’s Grand Prix after.”

The plans were revealed as part of the re-brand, now known as the Lincoln Festival of Cycling, encompassing a range of different disciplines for a range of different riders.

The success of the National Championships provided £2.25million worth of economic
benefit for the City and it’s understandable the new events have been continued. Features like the Sportive and Criterium will allow amateur riders the chance to cycle on the roads around Lincoln and give them a taste of the gruelling climbs and cobbles elite riders have to endure.

Ellmore said: “We had a very big crowd last year and we’d like to have as many people next year as we did last year. We don’t think the crowd will be as big though.

“Keeping the festival as a weekend-long event and not a stand-alone race will hopefully make people come again.”

The Lincoln Festival of Cycling will take place between May 13-15, 2016.