Thousands of spectators lined the streets of Warwickshire to see top cyclists battle it out in the UK’s most prestigious road race.
The county’s debut as stage-host for the OVO Energy Tour of Britain proved to be a huge success, with people flocking to see cycling’s biggest names tackle the 183.5km route.
Nuneaton was the start for the star-studded line up of competitors and they were cheered on by a huge amount of spectators, making their way out of the town centre and heading through the county.
Cllr Julie Jackson, Leader of Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council, said: “What an amazing day for Nuneaton! It was fantastic to welcome the Tour of Britain with such a strong line-up of world class cyclists.
“Nuneaton is a lovely market town and this race has presented us with a wonderful opportunity to promote all it has to offer to a wider audience.
“Television viewers far and wide will have had a glimpse of our pleasant shopping area and vibrant street market.
“I am sure that those visiting the town today for the first time will be tempted back again, so the race has been positive for the local economy. It has also provided us with the chance to promote our health and fitness agenda.
“I’d like to thank the teams for their visit today and wish them all the best for the rest of the Tour.”
Reigning Tour de France and Giro d’Italia champions Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome were among more than 100 riders who burst into action.
Fans were treated to a gripping finale as the race came to a close in Leamington Spa in the final stretch along Newbold Terrace.
Leader of Warwickshire County Council, Cllr Izzi Seccombe, was delighted with how the day unfolded.
“It’s been a fantastic day for the whole county. When we learned that we’d be hosting the Tour of Britain for the very first time, we could not wait for this day to come, and I think it’s exceeded all our expectations,” said Izzi.
“We’ve been treated to a magnificent day of action and excitement thanks to all the competitors and spectators. Having them here has been a great way to showcase everything that Warwickshire has to offer.
“We are also getting early evaluation back from June’s OVO Energy Women’s Tour. Early indications show that a huge amount of people turned out on the streets with nearly two thirds of all spectators coming from outside the county.
“The event was a huge benefit to businesses and let’s hope the same can be said for the Tour of Britain.”
For further information about the OVO Energy Tour of Britain or to continue to follow all the action visit www.tourofbritain.co.uk or keep up to date with all the coverage on ITV4.