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Opinion : On Yer Bike! Tour of Britain cycle race to pass through Wycombe District

| August 19, 2014


I feel that all too often in recent years Wycombe has been passed over when it comes to sporting events.

Take the London 2012 Olympics for example. The torch procession completely avoided the Wycombe District and didn’t even pass through Marlow which is home to one of the greatest Olympians ever.

Don’t forget Wycombe is the second largest town in Buckinghamshire after Milton Keynes yet we seem largely forgotten and the town fails to make it’s mark on the national sporting stage.

Even the building work to refurbish the Handy Cross sports centre will be completed too late to get any rebound from the 2012 Olympics or 2014 Commonwealth Games.

You can therefore imagine how pleased I was to read an article that appeared on the news section of this site a few days ago about stage six of the 2014 Tour Of Britain cycle race passing through the Wycombe District.

This is indeed good news and we should be grateful that at last a National sporting event is at last coming to our doorstep. However when I looked as the route the cyclists will be taking it seems that the actual race itself will be on the back roads in Chinnor, Bledlow Ridge, Saunderton, Princes Risborough and Great Missenden.

Although the route of the race goes through the ‘Wycombe District’ sadly it seems that the great town of High Wycombe won’t see any of the action which to me seems a terrible shame.

According to the official race route details and timings anyone wanting to see the race will need to be in Wycombe Road, Princes Risborough sometime between 14.14pm and 15.05pm on the afternoon of Friday 12th September 2014. Of course my good self will be at work then so sadly yours truly will be unable to see any of the gallant riders pedalling past.

Just think what could have been if the actual race had come to Wycombe.

Wouldn’t it have been a spectacular sight seeing the racers streaming down Marlow Hill, over the magnificent Abbey Way flyover, up Oxford Road and along West Wycombe Road  and turning right at the Pedestal before heading off down the A4010 towards Princes Risborough.

Not only would it have been a spectacular sight but I’m sure the roads would have been lined while cheering spectators encouraging the riders on.

It seems strange to me that such a high profile race would rather tootle along back roads of Buckinghamshire passing by fields where cows and sheep are the only spectators rather than going through major towns full of people. Maybe the race and team sponsors don’t want to bring their message to the masses?

Maybe Marlow Hill, incidentally the only hill in High Wycombe with a sign saying it is classed as ‘dangerous’, is just too much for the riders to handle?

Well, it looks like my record top speed of going downhill in Wycombe at 70MPH on a bicycle achieved many years ago when my good self was younger and more foolish will still stand.

What do you think?

*My next blog will be published on Friday evening around 8pm here on the WycombeToday.com website.

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