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Thrill of the tour draws crowds as Suffolk hosts ‘spectacular’ Tour of Britain stage six

PUBLISHED: 18:23 08 September 2017 | UPDATED: 18:23 08 September 2017

Hundreds of school children watched the riders as they passed through Kesgrave. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Hundreds of school children watched the riders as they passed through Kesgrave. Picture: GREGG BROWN

All eyes were on Suffolk and thousands of people lined the streets to catch a glimpse of the world’s top cyclists as the Tour of Britain swept through the county today.

Spectators get ready for the action. Picture: GREGG BROWN Spectators get ready for the action. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Excited crowds gathered at the start line in Newmarket on Friday morning with onlookers turning up early to watch big name riders such as Mark Cavendish saddle up ready for stage six of the race.

For the first time ever this year the Suffolk stage was based entirely within county borders and cycling fans from across the globe looked on as the riders raced east to the finish in Aldeburgh.

Caleb Ewan celebrates on the podium.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN Caleb Ewan celebrates on the podium. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Australian Caleb Ewan sprinted to secure his third stage win of the tour by three bike lengths.

Caleb Ewan celebrates as he crosses the finish line.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN Caleb Ewan celebrates as he crosses the finish line. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Crowds line the streets of Aldeburgh.   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN Crowds line the streets of Aldeburgh. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

How the race unfolded



Stage four winner Fernando Gaviria and Dylan Groenewegen were hot on his heels and finished in second and third place.

The peloton arrives on the Angel Hill in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: ANDY ABBOTT The peloton arrives on the Angel Hill in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: ANDY ABBOTT

Tony Goldson, cabinet member for health at Suffolk County Council, said the tour has given a variety of organisations the opportunity to showcase everything that Suffolk has to offer to international audiences.

A large crowd of people turned out to watch as the Tour of Britain set off from Suffolk. Picture: GREGG BROWN A large crowd of people turned out to watch as the Tour of Britain set off from Suffolk. Picture: GREGG BROWN

“The tour brings in £2.2million in general income and is watched by more than 110,000 to 115,000 people,” he said.

The Tour of Britain passing the Greene King Brewery, moving into Crown Street. Picture: SUZY ABBOTT The Tour of Britain passing the Greene King Brewery, moving into Crown Street. Picture: SUZY ABBOTT

“Around 14% of those people are from out of the area and about 12% spend at least a night here.

Chloe and Claire Oot enjoy the atmosphere in Newmarket. Picture: GREGG BROWN Chloe and Claire Oot enjoy the atmosphere in Newmarket. Picture: GREGG BROWN

“It really does give a wonderful view of what Suffolk is all about.

The Tour of Britain makes it way through Framlingham.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN The Tour of Britain makes it way through Framlingham. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

“It also shows how Suffolk can benefit from something as spectacular as this – it gives us the chance to showcase Suffolk and puts the county in a good light.

The Tour of Britain makes it way through Framlingham.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN The Tour of Britain makes it way through Framlingham. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

“People who see this must be absolutely invigorated by what these young people are able to achieve on these bikes.

“It’s brought communities together and has been a huge success.”

Kicking off in Newmarket riders made their way through Bury St Edmunds and west Suffolk villages before the race snaked through Dennington, past Framlingham Castle and Wickham Market before paying a visit to county town Ipswich and nearby Kesgrave.

It then travelled through Rendlesham, past Snape Maltings to the finish line in Aldeburgh’s High Street.

Stage five also took part in East Anglia, with a time trial in Clacton



Councillor Andy Drummond, mayor of Newmarket, waved the flag to start the race alongside councillor Ruth Bowman, chairman of Forest Heath District Council.

Mr Drummond said: “It was absolutely fantastic, the High Street was the perfect location for the race to start and there was a large amount of people in town.”

A group of children from All Saints’ Primary School in Newmarket were among many who lined the barriers to see a glimpse of the riders.

Outside The Bell Pub in Main Road, Kesgrave, pupils from Kesgrave High School lined the route before an intermediate sprint point.

Chloe Goodchild, 11, said: “It was really fun because you can wave and shout – it wasn’t just on TV how it usually is.”

The heavens opened as seven breakaway riders approached Framlingham, followed two minutes later by a tightly packed peloton.

Jenny Stockman, interim chairman of the Framlingham Business Association, said: “People have embraced the race as much as they can.”

TJ Haworth-Culf, of Suffolk Coastal District Council, added: “It’s been amazing to witness such a sporting spectacle here in Aldeburgh.

“Despite the weather, the thrill of the race has brought the crowds out all along the route and here for the fantastic finish in Aldeburgh.

“This has been an exciting day for everyone.”

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