Three million. That’s the number of people even the most conservative estimates reckon will turn out to watch the Tour de France over the three days that it passes through the UK this July. After some back-of-the-envelope mathematics, that works out at 5.5 people per metre along every one of the 546 kilometres of the race. That’s a lot of people.
Some hotels and bed and breakfasts reported selling out all their rooms within 10 minutes of the route announcement, and campsites and festivals are filling up fast — suggesting a good deal of those three million people have been planning their trips to the Tour for months in advance.
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While few will contest that catching the Tour soaring through the Pennines will be hard to beat, spending 24 hours perched perilously in a tent on the edge of Holme Moss might not be possible (or desirable) for everybody.
With food and drink, toilet facilities, big screens, easy access and plenty going on for the kids, a range of ‘spectator hubs’ across the region are set to offer everything for a hassle-free, last-minute Tour de France trip.
Some will be very busy — in particular on the Stray in Harrogate — while others like the hub in York’s Huntingdon Stadium will be further from the madding crowd.
So take your pick and enjoy le Tour!
Tour de France 2014, stage one: Leeds to Harrogate, 190.5km
Saturday, July 5 2014
Timings given are based on an average race speed of 42km/h. Actual timings may therefore differ if the peloton speed is greater or lesser than this average.
Start: LEEDS 11:10
Otley (A659-A660) 12:12
Skipton (A6069-A6131) 12:49
Cote de Cray, category 4 climb 13:38
Newbiggin intermediate sprint point 13:50
West Burton 13:53
Cote de Buttertubs, category 3 climb 14:29
Low Row 14:49
Cote de Griton Moor, category 3 climb 15:05
West Tanfield 15:50
North Stainley 15:54
North Lees 15:59
Wormald Green 16:15
Enter Harrogate 16:29
Finish: HARROGATE 16:32
Tour de France 2014, stage two: York to Sheffield, 198km
Sunday, July 6 2014
Timings given are based on an average race speed of 39km/h. Actual timings may therefore differ if the peloton speed is greater or lesser than this average.
Start: YORK 11:00
Kirk Hammerton 11:35
Green Hammerton 11:37
Cote de Blubberhouses, category 4 climb 12:32
Keighley intermediate sprint 13:05
Cross Roads 13:13
Cote d’Oxenhope Moor, category 3 climb 13:30
Hebden Bridge 13:40
Cote de Ripponden category 3 climb 14:13
Cote de Greetland category 3 climb 14:24
Cote de Holme Moss category 2 climb 15:00
Cote de Midhopestones category 3 climb 15:36
Cote de Bradfield category 4 climb 15:49
Cote d’Oughtibridge category 3 climb 15:59
Cote de Jenkin Road category 4 climb 16:21
Finish: SHEFFIELD 16:29
Going to watch the Tour de France in Yorkshire? Here are some things to do - and to avoid doing
Stage one: Full route details
Stage two: Full route details
Stage three: Full route details
Look ahead to the 2014 Tour de France: info, stages, TV coverage, past winners and more