Armitstead confirmed as starter for 2016 Women's Tour de Yorkshire

Otley's Lizzie Armitstead has confirmed that she will take part in this year's Women's Tour de Yorkshire

Armitstead confirmed as starter for 2016 Women's Tour de Yorkshire
Lizzie Armitstead will take part in the 2016 Tour de Yorkshire (image via: cyclingweekly)

World Champion, Lizzie Armitstead, has confirmed that she will ride the Women's Tour de Yorkshire later this year.

The race on Saturday, 30th April will give fans in Britain the first opportunity to see her race on home roads wearing the World Champions jersey she won in September last year. 

Setting off from Armitstead's hometown of Otley, the 135km ride which finishes in Doncaster will have a much higher profile this year thanks to work of the organisers, Welcome to Yorkshire.  

The 2015 Tour de Yorkshire was a huge success for the region (image via: heart.co.uk)

'Dream' to start race from hometown claims Armistead

After skipping the Yorkshire stage race in 2015 due to it clashing with a more important race in Luxembourg, Armitstead's presence this time around should help to increase the profile of the event.

Armitstead will be riding for Great Britain, rather than her usual team, Boels Dolmans, who are not competing at the event. The 27-year-old told the BBC that starting the race in her hometown is "an absolute dream."

Setting out from Otley, the 135km course will be raced by the women in the morning, followed by the men in the afternoon, who will be using Saturday's stage as the second of their three stage race. 

ASDA announced as new sponsors, making women's event one of biggest in the world

Adding to Armitstead's announcement, came news that the Women's Tour de Yorkshire now has a new sponsor, in the form of supermarket, ASDA

The Leeds-based company will provide the stage race with a £50,000 prize fund, £15,000 of which will go to winner. The prize money on offer is comparable to many of the more illustrious men's one-day stage races around the world, which should give women's cycling a huge boost going forward. 

For comparison, Arnaud Demare's victory last weekend at the prestigious Milan-San Remo last weekend saw him pocket £15,600, with the Tour of Flanders winner set to pick up the same amount in 11 days time. 

'Significant milestone' for women's racing claims Sir Gary Verity

After overseeing Yorkshire's successful hosting of the 2014 Tour de France Grand Depart, Sir Gary Verity believes the continued backing of women's racing means they have 'come good on our promise'.

Nobody could have imagined the incredible success of the Grand Depart two years ago, and with the Tour de Yorkshire now heading into it's second year, cycling on Yorkshire roads has gone from strength-to-strength. 

After news of the prize money on offer through the new sponsorship deal, Verity said that 'today is a hugely significant milestone for women's racing.' The top 20 finishers will all gain prize money, and the stage will be broadcast on both ITV4 and Eurosport