The Tour of Britain is the UK's most prestigious cycle race, a multi-stage event held annually in September. It brings together the best cyclists and teams in the world to battle it out on the roads of Great Britain, all the way from Scotland through to the Isle of Wight. Now, the countdown is on for one of the most spectacular and prestigious cycle races in the UK which will commence on Sunday 4 September 2022.
The Tour of Britain first developed just after the Second World War through a dispute between cyclists and the British administrative body, the National Cyclists' Union (NCU). The NCU was wary of a mass-participation cycle race being held on open roads, but cyclists wanted a British version of the Tour de France and to bring mass cycle racing to British roads.
Several iterations of the race followed in the subsequent decades. These included The Milk Race, sponsored by a sales monopoly for dairy farmers; the Kellogg’s Tour of Britain, which ran from the late 80s to the early 90s; and the PruTour which ran for two seasons in the late 90s. The Tour suffered bad publicity after multiple safety incidents, and took a five-year hiatus as a result before being reborn in the form we know it today in 2004.
The Tour of Britain is now an internationally renowned and respected race, attracting teams from all over the world to race the roads of the UK. British riders have won twice since the new format launched in 2004: Bradley Wiggins for Team Sky in 2013 and Steve Cummings for Team Dimension Data in 2016.
The Tour of Britain 2022 route is set to be history-making, with the most northerly Grand Depart to date and the first-ever opening day summit finish in modern race history. Many of the stages are being held in counties never to host a stage for the modern race before - including Gloucestershire and Dorset.
The 2022 race will begin in Scotland, before moving through the Scottish borders, northern England, southern England, and finishing in sensational style on the Isle of Wight. The total route length of the Tour of Britain 2022 will see riders cover 1,204km over eight stages.
The Grand Depart for the Tour of Britain 2022 will commence in the heart of Aberdeen city centre. The first stage is 181.3km (112.7m) and will be the most northerly start in the Tour of Britain’s history.
Got a Wattbike Atom? You can take on the first summit finish 'The Old Military Road' on the Wattbike Hub (in the Summer Sessions category) which has a distance of 9.16km and an average gradient of 2.9%.
Stage 2 will see the teams cycle from Hawick to Duns in the Scottish borders. This stage will be 175.2km in length and see the riders battling it out over a total elevation gain of 2,457m throughout the stage.
The third stage of the 2022 route begins in Durham. Although this city has never hosted a modern Tour of Britain stage before, it was the setting of multiple editions of The Milk Race. The total distance for Stage 3 will be 163.6km.
Stage 4 is when the race will really begin to heat up, as the brutal final 30km of this 149.5km stage features the climbs of Carlton Bank (2km long, 9.8% average gradient) and Newgate Bank (2km long, 6% average gradient). The riders will at least be able to enjoy a downhill finish as they descend into Duncombe Park, one of Yorkshire’s finest historic houses and estates.
Why not test your Wattbiker stamina and conquer Carlton Bank climb on the Wattbike Hub app in the Summer Sessions x ToB category.
Stage 5 is the only stage in the Tour of Britain 2022 with less than 2,000m of climbing. The route will take in iconic landmarks in this part of Britain, such as Clumber Park and Sherwood Forest, as well as passing by Wattbike HQ in Nottingham!
Gloucestershire will be host to stage 6 of the Tour of Britain 2022, the first time this county has hosted a stage for the prestigious race. This stage is set to be a fan-favourite, with the start and finish only 10 miles apart and the route winding its way through the iconic Cotswolds area of outstanding natural beauty.
The penultimate stage of the race showcases the beauty of Dorset and West Bay's golden cliffs, running parallel with the West Dorset Heritage coast to Ferndown. Riders will complete 175.9km featuring two Category 2 climbs and one Category 3 climb.
The final stage of the Tour of Britain will be an epic showdown on the Isle of Wight, and is set to be the largest ever sporting event to take place on the island. The spectacular 148.9km route will take the cyclists from Ryde to the iconic Needles and is sure to captivate the entire island. Not only that, the final 400 metres of the race average a gradient of 9.6%, making it the toughest ending to any Tour of Britain in modern history.
Feeling brave? You can finish the final climb of the Tour with the pros on the Wattbike Hub. Head to the Summer Sessions category and select 'Needles Battery' climb!
To train for the Tour of Britain, riders will need to work on both endurance and power. Distance training is a must, as are tough climbs.
The electromagnetic resistance system allows the Wattbike Atom to instantly react to elevation changes when climbing, and with a choice of preset gearing options, riders can personalise their setup to mimic the feeling of riding outdoors.
Wattbike has essentialtraining plans expertly designed for cyclists looking to emulate Grand Tour riding. One of the best is theHaute Road Training Plan, a training plan designed to prepare you for a multi-day event with lots of climbing. There are also50-mile and 100-mile sportive training plans, which will help prepare you for the distance covered during the Tour’s route and major stages.
Finally, theWattbike Hub App has over 100 workouts from HIIT and sprints to climbs and event simulations, providing everything you need to train for the Tour of Britain, ride like a pro, and improve your endurance and power.
Head to the Summer Sessions x Tour of Britain category to conquer three climbs in this year's race.