First British virtual racing championships will be broadcast live on TV

British Cycling’s inaugural e-racing event will be held later this month

The first British virtual racing championships will be broadcast live on TV.

British Cycling and Zwift have organised the inaugural national title for e-racing, with the finals due to be held later this month.

Olympic gold medallist Dani Rowe, Ian Bibby, Rosamund Bradbury, Jon Mould and Stevie Young will race in the live finals, due to be held on Thursday, March 28.

Winners will receive £400 prize money and a virtual national jersey to be worn on Zwift for a year.

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Second place will receive £200 and £100 will be awarded to the bronze medal winner.

The competition, held at the BT Sport Studios in London, will be broadcast on BT Sport.

British Cycling’s commercial director Jonathan Rigby said: “We had nearly 400 people on the virtual start line and thousands more tuning into our online qualifying event back in February.

“We are looking forward to building on those brilliant numbers to see what our finalists can bring to London on 28 March.

“Having such a well-regarded broadcaster like BT Sport on board for the championships is testament to the broad appeal it has carried since announcing this new event late last year both within the cycling industry, but also amongst new audiences and new generations.

“We are in the infancy of our partnership with Zwift however the huge boom in e-sports means that the sky is the limit for indoor cycling.”

The qualifying round for the live finals was held on Sunday, February 24.

In the final, the top 10 male and female qualifiers will battle it out for national champion’s jerseys.

The event will comprise of an elimination race, points race and a scratch race for men and women, starting at 1.55pm on March 28.

Zwift CEO and co-founder Eric Min said: “We’re just at the very beginning of forming a new discipline of cycling and I can’t wait to see these 20 athletes go head-t0-head in the live finals.

“British Cycling has a reputation of being at the forefront of innovation and we’ve already seen their members embrace the opportunity in the qualifying rounds.

“This will be a great spectacle and I’m delighted that audiences at home will be able to watch the action live on BT Sport.”

Tech brand Wahoo is the official partner for the event.

Wahoo CEO Chip Hawkins said: “We are delighted to be part of the first ever British Cycling Zwift eRacing Championships.

“At Wahoo we’re confident that eSports has a part to play in the future of cycling and are proud to help cultivate this.”

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Race one will be an elimination race over five laps of the 2.8km LaGuardia Loop.

The last two riders to cross the line will be eliminated, with 10 points handed to the winner, nine to second, down to one point for the rider eliminated first.

In the points race, riders will tackle three laps of the 4.1km Volcano Circuit CCW.

Each time a rider crosses the sprint line, the first four will be awarded points, with double points on the final lap.

The rider who accumulates the most points will be the winner.

Finally is the scratch race – the first to cross the line after two laps of the 9.1km Watopia Hilly Route wins.

The event starts at 1.55pm and will be live-streamed on the British Cycling Facebook page and website from then.

From 8pm until 10pm it will be broadcast live on BT Sport 1.

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