Former winner Dylan van Baarle and hotly-tipped Russian Pavel Sivakov headline Team INEOS’ six-man squad for the OVO Energy Tour of Britain, which is set to return to Warwickshire.
The pair will be joined by Ireland’s Eddie Dunbar, Michal Golas and Gianni Moscon. Reigning British road race champion Ben Swift, whose participation in the race was confirmed last week, completes their line-up.
Van Baarle, the 2014 winner of the UK’s biggest cycle race, has since finished fifth (2016) and eighth overall (2015) since being crowned the champion five years ago. The Dutchman formed part of INEOS’ Tour de France team that helped Egan Bernal and Geraint Thomas finish first and second overall in July.
Now in his second year as a professional, Sivakov, 22, finished ninth in the Giro d’Italia in May. He also enjoyed overall success in the five-day Tour of the Alps in May, as well as the seven-day Tour of Poland at the start of August.
Irishman Dunbar, 22, finished third in this year’s Tour de Yorkshire, while Golas (35, Poland) placed ninth in the 2013 Tour of Britain and won the Eisberg sprints jersey three years earlier.
A top-ten finisher in the prestigious Paris-Roubaix and Il Lombardia races, Moscon (25) will make his race debut next week.
The OVO Energy Tour of Britain will travel through all five districts and boroughs of Warwickshire for the first time when it returns on Friday September 13.
The 186.5k route starts at Warwick Racecourse and goes through Kenilworth, the University of Warwick, Meridan, Fillongley, Atherstone, Mancetter, Hartshill, Galley Common, Corley, Bedworth, Bulkington, Brinklow, Long Lawford, Bilton, Dunchurch, Kites Hardwick, Princethorpe, Ashorne, Wellesbourne, Ettington, Edgehill, Warmington, Temple Herdewyke, and three ascents of Burton Dassett on a 12k route.
The peloton will head up towards Meriden via Kenilworth and Berkswell, before travelling across North Warwickshire to Bedworth and Bulkington.
Riders will then head south towards Brinklow and the outskirts of Rugby, and back up to Princethorpe before racing along Fosse Way, down to Wellesbourne, and through Ettington and Edgehill.
Three Eisberg Sprints await competitors during the stage, the first at Berkswell, the second at Brinklow, and the third at Pillerton Priors.
Competitors will then face three Skoda King of the Mountain challenges in a gruelling final stretch including two full loops of Burton Dassett County Park before crossing the tour’s first-ever hill top finish line.
ITV4 will once again screen live free-to-air coverage flag-to-flag of each stage in the UK, along with a nightly highlights programme of the best of the action.
More details on the route can be found at www.tourofbritain.co.uk/stages/stage-seven