The route of the 2012 Tour of Britain was officially launched on Thursday. The eight-day race starts in Ipswich on Sunday September 9 and concludes in Guildford on Sunday, September 16.

The race once again visits England, Wales and Scotland. However, a London finish has been ruled out this year due to the capital’s hosting of the 2012 Olympic Games just seven weeks before.

Instead of a London finale, the fial day takes the rides through the Surrey hills and onto the cobbled streets of Guildford.

The total distance of the race at 1,349.9 kilometres is the longest that it has been since the Tour of Britain returned to the calendar.

For more information on this year’s Tour of Britain route see this week’s issue of Cycling Weekly magazine (April 26 issue)

Tour of Britain 2012: Stages

Stage one, Sunday September 9

Ipswich-Norfolk Showground, Norwich, 199.6km

Stage two, Monday September 10

Nottingham-Knowsley Safari Park, 178km

Stage three, Tuesday September 11

Jeburgh-Dumfries, 161.4km

Stage four, Wednesday September 12

Carlisle-Blackpool, 156km

Stage five, Thursday September 13

Stoke-on-Trent, 146.9km

Stage six, Friday September 14

Welshpool-Caerphilly, 189.8km

Stage seven, Saturday September 15

Barnstaple-Dartmouth, 170.7km

Stage eight, Sunday September 16

Reigate-Guildford, 147.7km