Local people and visitors will get the chance to see over 100 professional cyclists compete in one of the most challenging cycle races of the calendar when the Chorley Grand Prix returns for the fourth year running on Sunday 15 April.
Chorley Council has once again teamed up with British Cycling to host the prestigious event that will see cyclists from around the UK and oversees battle it out over a challenging five lap, 100 mile route as part of the 2018 HSBC UK Spring Cup Series.
The popular event is returning to the Chorley borough after being described as ‘one of the best ever supported national road series races in the country’. It will also showcase the beautiful borough to a European audience when the event is broadcast on Eurosport.
The decorated bikes along the route will also return this year, with residents, community groups and schools being encouraged to again decorate, donate and recycle unwanted bikes, to give the cyclists a warm and colourful welcome. Bikes can be decorated with any suitable waterproof materials and then donated by contacting Chorley Council’s health and wellbeing team by the end of March.
Councillor Peter Wilson, Deputy Leader of Chorley Council with responsibility for events, said: “Chorley has some of the best cycling routes in the whole of the country with a mixture of flat open roads and challenging climbs and we are seeing more and more people visit each year.
“We have been overwhelmed with the success of the race since it began three years ago and due to the fantastic feedback we wanted to bring it back again in 2018 and continue to put Chorley on the map as a destination, which has a real enthusiasm for cycling.”
“This is the first year that the event will take place on a Sunday and besides Park Road, the race will operate with a rolling road closure, which means traffic will only be held for around five minutes as the cyclists go past. The only exception to this is on the last lap when Southport Road will be closed for around 20 minutes as the race is completed.
“Not only does the Chorley Grand Prix put on a spectacle for local people but it attracts many more people into the borough, which provides a great boost for the local economy. We’re urging people to line the route, get involved and cheer on the cyclists for what is sure to be another fantastic day out.”
The race will be held on Sunday 15 April, which is the first time it has taken place on a Sunday and not on Easter weekend. The change in date is to fit in with the British Cycling calendar and is based on feedback from businesses in the town centre.
The start and finish line of the Chorley Grand Prix is on Park Road, in Chorley town centre. The 100 mile route will then takes the cyclists out to Rivington, Belmont, Abbey Village, Withnell, Brinscall, Wheelton, Buckshaw Village and back to Chorley.
The riders will complete five laps of the circuit with mostly rolling road closures in place from 11am until 4pm, which will mean very minimal disruption to traffic as the traffic is stopped temporarily while the cyclists pass. Park Road and part of Queens Road will be closed from 6am until 6pm on Sunday 15 April. Southport Road will be closed for around 20 minutes for the last lap only and one side of Sheep House Lane and Rivington Road will be closed to west-bound traffic for the day, meaning there will be parking restrictions and diversion routes in place around these areas.