The Vélo Birmingham has relaunched for 2019 as the Vélo Birmingham and Midlands.
The UK’s second biggest closed-road cycling event is returning on 12th May 2019 with a new 100-mile route through the West Midlands.
The new route will travel through the heart of the 2021 City of Culture, Coventry, and riders also will go through Solihull, Warwickshire, Dudley and Sandwell.
Lord Sebastian Coe, chairman of organisers CSM, said: “We are delighted that Vélo Birmingham and Midlands is returning in May 2019.
“The fantastic support for the event from our local authority partners demonstrates the importance for the Midlands of hosting major events in the build up to the 2022 Commonwealth Games and we thank them enormously for helping us create this stunning 100-mile route.
“The new and improved route really shows off the beauty and diversity of the Midlands and the opportunity to experience cycling through the heart of two major Midlands cities on closed roads will provide a truly unique experience for the 17,000 riders taking part.
“The event will be a fantastic spectacle of cycling, charity fundraising and community spirit and I am sure it will inspire people of all ages and abilities to take up the sport of cycling and lead a healthier, more active life.”
Alongside growing the event in terms of overall capacity, organisers aim to make the event one of the UK’s most female friendly sportives, with the target of increasing the number of women taking part to 50 per cent by the time Birmingham hosts the Commonwealth Games in 2022.
The ambition is underpinned by a long-term strategy, which looks to tackle the barriers and understand motivators to women entering sportive events, with the aim of working closely with key partners to get more women to take part year on year.
In 2017, participants also raised £2 million for several charities, including Cure Leukaemia, NSPCC, Alzheimer’s Society and Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham, all of whom remain as headline charity partners in 2019.
Vélo Birmingham and Midlands will also feature the Business 100 corporate challenge, which will aim to attract 100 Midland based companies to sign up teams of four and enjoy an unrivalled VIP participation experience.
Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, said: “As we get ready to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games, the Vélo Birmingham and Midlands will be a great event to showcase the best of the region.
"This was an absolute triumph last year with 15,000 people riding their bikes on the closed road route and many residents coming out to support them.
"There was also a very positive impact on the local economy, and of course the thousands of pounds raised for different charities.
“I invite residents and those coming to visit the West Midlands to take part in what is sure to be another hugely successful event”
The event was launched at the Cycle Show in Birmingham today with a panel consisting of Lord Coe, former England rugby captain Martin Johnson CBE, leader of Birmingham City Council Ian Ward and the event’s female ambassador Rebecca Charlton.
Entries will open on 4th October exclusively to everyone who pre-registers before midnight on 3rd October.