Organiser of the prestigious British race SweetSpot Group has announced the event will not take place this year after initially being postponed from its planned date in June.
>> Subscribe to Cycling Weekly this Autumn and save 35%. Enjoy the luxury of home delivery and never miss an issue <<
In mid-March, the organisers announced the 2020 edition would be delayed, but the six-stage race will instead return in June 2021, with plans the race will cover the route from Oxfordshire to Suffolk that had been planned for this year.
Hugh Roberts from SweetSpot said: “Following discussions with stakeholders and sponsors, as well as British Cycling and the UCI, we have decided to work towards June 2021 for the next edition of the Women’s Tour, and will not seek to re-arrange the race later in 2020.
“We recognise the unprecedented nature of the current global situation and the challenges for the UCI calendar and so wanted to take an early decision not to look for an alternative 2020 date.”
The Women’s Tour, won overall by Lizzie Deignan (Trek-Segafredo) last season, is a popular event with amongst riders, who support its equal prize money with the men’s Tour of Britain and large crowds at the roadside.
Now looking to its eighth edition since being launched in 2014, the race has attracted star riders including Deignan, Marianne Vos and Coryn Rivera.
Roberts added: “With the extra time now available we look forward to making next year’s Women’s Tour even bigger and better than before and a fantastic celebration of cycling and Britain.
“We are now working with partners on our plans for the Women’s Tour to be live streamed for the first time in 2021 and are also exploring opportunities to bring the race closer to our fans than ever before in these challenging times, such as the opportunity to race and ride past stages on their home trainer.”
The women’s cycling calendar has been turned on its head by the global coronavirus pandemic, with dozens of races cancelled or postponed.
International governing body the UCI has yet to announce its plans for the women’s cycling calendar.