Tour of Britain 2021 route: Start and finish locations unveiled for 18th edition

The 2020 race was cancelled due to the Coronavirus global pandemic and will take place in 2021, starting in Cornwall

Mathieu van der Poel wins stage seven of the Tour of Britain 2019 (Photo by Stephen Pond/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The Tour of Britain will be kicking off with a Cornish stage which will begin in Penzance and end in Bodmin in 2021 after Covid-19 forced the organiser to cancel the 2020 edition. The 2021 edition is keeping the same route as the 2020 race and is down to take place between September 5-12.

Stage two will see riders tackle the hills of Devon, in the race's 11th visit to the county with the stage kicking off in the new community of Sherford in the South Hams, and finish in the city of Exeter.

Both stages three and four will be in Wales and will likely take in some of the big mountains in the country.

Stage five is back in England and goes from somewhere in South Cheshire to Warrington before continuing north with stage six, starting in Cumbria instead of the expected mountainous finish with the stage finishing on the other side of the country in Gateshead.

The seventh stage finally heads over the Scottish border with a stage between Hawick and Scotland's capital, Edinburgh.

The eighth and final stage will be held in Aberdeenshire, with the finish line located in Aberdeen city centre where the race's overall winner will be crowned.

This will be the first time the Tour of Britain has visited the region, and the deal that has been signed will see Aberdeenshire also host a race start in the coming years.

It's also the first time the race has used Penzance, Bodmin, Sherford, Warrington, and Hawick as start/finish locations in the race.

The race will see a peloton of around 120 riders seek to take the title from reigning champion, Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix).

The provisional route for the opening stage travels through the likes of St Ives and Newquay.

Other towns likely to be in on the action include St Just, Hayle, Camborne, Poole, Redruth, Falmouth, Penryn, Truro, St Austell and the riders should pass the Eden Project.

It is expected that the race's visit will boost Cornwall's economy by around £3 million with 180,000 people due to spectate; it'll be the biggest sporting event ever hosted in Cornwall, and will be broadcast on ITV4 and Eurosport.

Devon has played host to the race 10 times previously, the last instance was in 2018. Australian Cameron Meyer won the stage, whilst a group of farmers from South Molton won the first-ever 'National Land Art' competition for their depiction of a bicycle made from hay bales and tractors.

It's estimated that 1.7 million people have lined the route in the county so far, bringing in £41 million to the local economy.

>>> Dr Hutch: What were the origins of the Tour of Britain?

Tour of Britain 2021 route

The full announcement of the 2021 route is expected later in the year - we'll update this page as information becomes available.

StageDateStart/finishDistance
Stage 1September 5 2021Penzance to Bodmin, Cornwall170km
Stage 2September 6 2021Sherford to Exeter185km
Stage 3September 7 2021WalesTBC
Stage 4September 8 2021WalesTBC
Stage 5September 9 2021South Cheshire to WarringtonTBC
Stage 6September 10 2021Cumbria to GatesheadTBC
Stage 7September 11 2021Hawick, Scottish Borders to EdinburghTBC
Stage 8September 12 2021Stonehaven to AberdeenTBC

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Tour of Britain 2021 TV schedule

As per previous years, it's likely you'll be able to see the race live or catch up via highlights on ITV4, Eurosport and GCN Race Pass.

The daily timings are yet to be announced.

StageDateLiveHighlights
Stage 1September 5 2021TBCTBC
Stage 2September 6 2021
Stage 3September 7 2021
Stage 4September 8 2021
Stage 5September 9 2021
Stage 6September 10 2021
Stage 7September 11 2021
Stage 8September 12 2021

Who sponsors the Tour of Britain?

British independent energy supplier OVO Energy was unveiled as the race's title sponsor in 2017, but the Tour of Britain as well as the Women's Tour are on the hunt for a new backer after OVO decided to bring their sponsorship to an end after three years.

Tour of Britain jerseys

The top prize at the Tour of Britain is the green jersey, this goes to the leader of the General Classification. In the last edition of the race, this went to Mathieu Van der Peol (Corendon-Circus).

Mathieu van der Poel at the Tour of Britain 2019 (Photo by Stephen Pond/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

There's also a Points jersey up for grabs, for the rider who claims the best results in stage winning sprints. In 2019 Matteo Trentin (then Mitchalton Scott).

Closely related is the Sprints jersey, donned by the rider who picks up the most points in intermediate sprints - this was awarded to Rory Townsend (Canyon-dhb).

The King of the Mountains Jersey goes to the rider who claims the best results on designated ascents. In 2019, Jacob Scott (Swiftcarbon Pro Cycling) took the honours.

>>> Get inspired: Iconic ToB photos

Past winners of the Tour of Britain

  • 2004 – Mauricio Ardila (Col) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf
  • 2005 – Nick Nuyens (Bel) Quick-Step-Innergetic
  • 2006 – Martin Pedersen (Den) Team CSC
  • 2007 – Romain Feillu (Fra) Agritubel
  • 2008 – Geoffroy Lequatre (Fra) Agritubel
  • 2009 – Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Team Columbia-HTC
  • 2010 – Michael Albasini (Sui) Team HTC-Columbia
  • 2011 – Lars Boom (Ned) Rabobank
  • 2012 – Nathan Haas (Aus) Garmin-Sharp
  • 2013 – Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Team Sky
  • 2014 – Dylan van Baarle (Ned) Garmin-Sharp
  • 2015 – Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN-Qhubeka
  • 2016 – Steve Cummings (GBr) Team Dimension Data
  • 2017 – Lars Boom (Ned) LottoNL–Jumbo
  • 2018 - Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Quick-Step Floors
  • 2019 - Mathieu Van der Peol (Ned) Corendon-Circus
  • 2020 - No race due to Covid-19 pandemic