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Tour of Britain to feature time trial

The 2011 Tour of Britain will be decided in London on Sunday September 18 – with a morning time trial followed by an afternoon criterium. 

Racing on stages 8a and 8b will kick-off with a 10km dash against the clock on a circuit along the Embankment between Whitehall and Tower Hill, before eight laps of the same loop will be used for the Tour’s 80km finale.

With the race traditionally dominated by sprinters, organisers have moved to provide a finale day shake-up of the general classification.

“The absence of a time trial has always been the biggest missing element of the Tour and we have tried to address that to a certain extent this year,” said route organiser Graham Jones.

“It’s difficult because, with the regional development agencies heavily involved, we have never felt that a simple time-trial lasting a couple of hours is sufficient return for all their investment and support but this year we have been able to combine it with the final stage in the city.

“Coming at the end of two or three very tough days in Wales, in the south west and then a long transfer to East Anglia followed by a 200km stage, I think some riders will be very tired and it could still be a very big factor in the race.

“We are hoping that along with the circuit race it will be a nice warm-up for the crowds ahead of the Olympic road races.”

The 2011 race will feature stages in England, Scotland and Wales for the first time, starting north of the border for the 170km opening stage from Peebles to Dumfries on Sunday September 11.

Five ProTeams will line-up on the start line – Leopard-Trek, Garmin-Cervelo, HTC-Highroad (who had Michael Albasini ride to victory in 2010), Saxo Bank and Team Sky – with riders looking to hone their form ahead of the World Championships, which run from September 18-25 in Copenhagen.

Sixteen teams will race in all, including British domestic outfits Endura, Motorpoint, Raleigh, Rapha Condor Sharp and Sigma Sport-Specialized.

Stages

Sunday September 11 – stage one – Peebles – Dumfries (170km)
Monday September 12 – stage two – Kendal – Blackpool (130km)
Tuesday September 13 – stage three – Stoke-Stoke (150km)
Wednesday September 14 – stage four – Welshpool -Caerphilly (180km)
Thursday September 15 – stage five – Exeter-Exmouth (180km)
Friday September 16 – stage six – Taunton-Wells (150km)
Saturday September 17 – stage seven – Bury St Edmunds – Sandringham (200km)
Sunday September 18 – stage eight – (a) time trial, 10km; (b) criterium, 80km

Teams 

An Post-Sean Kelly Cycling Team (Ireland)
Colnago CSF Inox (Italy)
Endura Racing (Britain)
Europcar (France)
Garmin-Cervelo (USA)
HTC-Highroad (USA)
Leopard-Trek (Luxembourg)
Motorpoint (Britain)
NetApp (Germany)
Rabobank (Netherlands)
Raleigh (Britain)
Rapha Condor Sharp (Britain)
Sigma Sport-Specialized (Britain)
Sky Professional Cycling Team (Britain)
Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator (Belgium)
Vacansoleil-DCM (Netherlands)

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