Riders at the 2016 Aviva Women's Tour (June 15-19) will have to find their climbing legs as the race heads to the hills for its toughest edition in its three-year history.
Four of the five stages take place in the heart of England, heading to the Peak District for the first time in the stage between Ashbourne and Chesterfield on day three.
Warwickshire will also get a first visit on stage two as riders travel between Atherstone and Stratford-upon-Avon, while Nottingham and Stoke-on-Trent will host the start and finish of stage four respectively.
Riders then return to the familiar parcours of Northamptonshire for a final stage between Northampton and Kettering, where Christine Majerus took the win in the 2015 edition.
"We are delighted to present the route for the 2016 Aviva Women's Tour with a significantly tougher parcours than the previous editions, as requested by the team's following last year, allowing us to take the race to some new areas," said race director Mick Bennett.
"The interest from venues around the country to host the race has been huge, allowing us to put together an attractive route that will make not only for excellent racing, but also big crowds from the major towns and cities on, or close to the route.
"When we created the Women's Tour in 2014 we said that our aim was for the event to be the world's best women's race within three years and it is our firm belief that being a part of the new UCI Women's WorldTour sees us well on course to do so.”
Aviva Women's Tour route
Stage One, Wednesday 15 June: Southwold to Norwich, 132km
Stage Two, Thursday 16 June: Atherstone to Stratford-upon-Avon, 140km
Stage Three, Friday 17 June: Ashbourne to Chesterfield, 112km
Stage Four, Saturday 18 June: Nottingham to Stoke-on-Trent, 119km
Stage Five, Sunday 19 June: Northampton to Kettering, 133km
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Stuart Clarke is a News Associates trained journalist who has worked for the likes of the British Olympic Associate, British Rowing and the England and Wales Cricket Board, and of course Cycling Weekly. His work at Cycling Weekly has focused upon professional racing, following the World Tour races and its characters.
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