The UCI has announced that the Manchester velodrome will host the 2008 track world championships, beating off a bid from Poland. And Liverpool has done a deal with the Tour of Britain for stages over the next three years, including a Tour finale in 2008 when Liverpool is the European Capital of Culture.

NW England on track to stage major races

The Northwest stage of the Tour of Britain cycle stage race, sponsored by the Northwest Regional Development Agency, will finish in Liverpool on August 30 and will start in Liverpool in 2007.

And the whole Tour will finish with a circuit race around the city streets in 2008.

The finish of the race has so far taken place on Whitehall in London but Liverpool will take the honours in 2008 with the race being part of the City’s European Capital of Culture Sports Strategy.

Merseyside’s former Olympic cyclist and world record holder Chris Boardman said: “This is great news for Liverpool and I’m sure the event will have a real impact on the city.”

Boardman retired before The Tour of Britain enjoyed its revival in 2004 but did ride the race under its former identity, the Prutour.

He said: “It is an amazing experience to be involved in a world-class event on home soil. I was riding roads that were completely familiar to me surrounded by world-class sports stars – it was an odd feeling but there was something very special about it.”

This year’s Tour will take place between August 29 and September 3 with the Northwest stage taking place on August 30th.

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