Tour de Yorkshire bringing the community together

Stage Two.
Stage Two.

Crowds are gathering in Knottingley ahead of the arrival of the men’s race on day two of the Tour de Yorkshire.

Earlier they watched the women’s race pass through our district arriving in South Milford this morning before heading through Monk Fryston. Knottingley, Badsworth, Pontefract and South Elmsall and Upton.

Kirsten Wild won the 2016 Tour de Yorkshire Women’s Race

Lizzie Armitstead’s bid for the richest prize in women’s cycling ended 3km from home as Kirsten Wild won the Asda Women’s Tour de Yorkshire in Doncaster.

Wild, 33, from Holland, capitalised when world champion Armitstead’s long breakaway was swallowed up by the chasing pack.

The second stage started in Otley and will finish in Doncaster.

Wakefield Council has organised an event behind Knottingley sports centre which features a cycle challenge, face painting, BMX stunt displays and live music.

The men’s race is expected to arrive at around 3.30pm.

Kevin Wootton, 42, took on the cycle challenge.

He said: “Taking the challenge really tired me out even though I cycle every morning before work.

“The Tour de Yorkshire is a really fantastic event that gets people motivated to be active and join in the fun - it brings people together.”

Chris Davis is he Fitness Consultant at the sports centre and he helped organise the cycle challenge.

He said: “We wanted to do this for the local people and really promote an active lifestyle.

“This is all in the fight to combat obesity and encourage healthy living.

“We’re here today to get the youngsters on the bikes and for them to see how important it is, the Tour really helps us achieve this goal.”

Riders Brett Penfold and Ian Drummond ,from the 3Sixty Bicycle Stunt team, were also entertaining the crowds at the sports centre.

They have broken 11 Guinness world records and have toured the world performing BMX stunts.

They impressed the crowds with moves including as a 360 spin from a van onto a can of energy drink and climbing a makeshift set of stairs on just the back wheel of their bikes.

Brett said: “Its really exciting, we’ve been performing this for about ten years.

“We perform at weekend events and the like, in schools etc.

“This is our first performance this year.”

Speaking about the Tour de Yorkshire, Brett said: “We have the purest form of talent in this country and its really supporting local industries.

“The tour has been so well accepted in this country and we are following the tour round for stage 3 tomorrow.

“There has been great crowds, nice people and the weather has kept fairly dry.”

Teenage singer and Sydney Barlow will be taking to the stage later.

He said: “I am singing later on and do a range of new, old and upbeat songs so everyone can join in.

“Unfortunately I didn’t see the women’s race this morning however I am going to make sure I see the men’s race later on.

“The Tour de Yorkshire is such a fantastic event for everyone in the community.”