The Tour of Britain 2020 has been postponed, with this year's route to instead be used for the 2021 edition.
The decision has been taking due to the coronavirus pandemic, which organisers have said made the planning and organisation of the race "impractical". The provisional 2021 dates for the race are September 5 - 12, starting and finishing on a Sunday.
"Across the UK there are significant doubts around the potential to stage large-scale public events and gatherings such as the Tour of Britain as early as September and while any form of social distancing remains in place and there isn’t a vaccine available, people’s health and safety must come first," organisers said in a statement.
The statement goes on to say local authorities across Britain remain under considerable pressure and rightly have other priorities at the moment, and are therefore unable to help with the planning as well as not able to maximise the various benefits of welcoming a stage of the Tour of Britain to their areas.
The Tour of Britain has said conducting the race behind closed doors with extensive social distancing rules would also not work and would "rob our venues and spectators of these opportunities and go against everything that cycling, as a free-to-spectate and accessible event, stands for."
By delaying the race by 12 months, they say it will make the 2021 race a "wonderful occasion for all and part of our continued pledge to make Britain a great cycling nation".
Originally planned to take place between September 6-13, the 2020 race was set to feature a first-ever visit to Cornwall and an overall finish in the city of Aberdeen. The full route for the race during its eight stages will be announced later in the year.
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Hi. I'm Cycling Weekly's Weekend Editor. I like writing offbeat features and eating too much bread when working out on the road at bike races.
Before joining Cycling Weekly I worked at The Tab and I've also written for Vice, Time Out, and worked freelance for The Telegraph (I know, but I needed the money at the time so let me live).
I also worked for ITV Cycling between 2011-2018 on their Tour de France and Vuelta a España coverage. Sometimes I'd be helping the producers make the programme and other times I'd be getting the lunches. Just in case you were wondering - Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen had the same ham sandwich every day, it was great.
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