Stage set for scenic women’s road race

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - By Camilla Good­man

HUN­DREDS of peo­ple will line the streets of Bucks this week­end to see some of the world’s top fe­male cy­clists com­pete in the fi­nal stage of a gru­elling road race.

Stage Five of the Friends Life Women’s Tour sets off in Mar­low at 11am on Sun­day and ends in Hemel Hemp­stead.

The 64-mile fi­nal stage will pass through Great King­shill, Prest­wood, Great Mis­senden, Hyde End, Che­sham, Hawridge and Choles­bury.

Or­gan­is­ers have now re­vealed the ap­prox­i­mate tim­ings for the race, with the cy­clists ex­pected to ar­rive in Great King­shill at about 12.17pm and leave Choles­bury at 12.54pm be­fore head­ing into Tring and fin­ish­ing in Hemel Hemp­stead at about 1.42pm.

The stage is sup­ported by Chiltern Dis­trict Coun­cil, Wy­combe Dis­trict Coun­cil,Buck­ing­hamshire County Coun­cil, Leap (the Bucks & MK Sport and Ac­tiv­ity Part­ner­ship) and Da­co­rum Coun­cil.

Leap is hop­ing the event will in­spire peo­ple to get on their bikes. Its di­rec­tor, Mark Ormerod, said: “It’s the big­gest women’s race in Bri­tain and the world’s top fe­male cy­clists com­pete in it, so we’re de­lighted as a county to play host. Our hope now is that the public get so fired up by this event that they feel inspired to get on their bikes, par­tic­u­larly women and girls.”

Route di­rec­tor for race or­gan­is­ers SweetSpot, Andy Hawes, who hails from Bucks, said: “Stage Five will be an ex­tremely pic­turesque run through the Chilterns, whether for spec­ta­tors at the road­side or watch­ing the ITV high­lights. It’s also a very

Bor­ough chal­leng­ing route with ap­proach­ing 1,400-me­tres of to­tal as­cent, so no­body should ex­pect this to be an easy fi­nal stage.”

To co­in­cide with the stage, Che­sham Leisure Cen­tre has or­gan­ised a fam­ily Be Inspired event from 10am to 2.30pm. The event is free and of­fers an op­por­tu­nity to try out park­our, tag rugby, bad­minton, ac­tiv­ity ses­sions and more. Prizes will also be up for grabs.

Some 16 teams, made up of 96 riders from nine coun­tries will take part in the Women’s Tour, in­clud­ing 12 of the world’s top 15-ranked teams.

High­lights are on ITV4 on Sun­day evening, and will be re­peated on Mon­day morn­ing. For more de­tails, in­clud­ing the 12.17pm: Out­side Great King­shill Com­bined

School; 12.18pm: Great

King­shill; 12.19pm: Cross­roads; 12.21pm: Prest­wood; 12.25pm: A4128 High Street, out­side AGE

elec­tri­cal; 12.26pm: Great

Mis­senden; 12.28pm: High Street,

Great Mis­senden; 12.28pm: A4128 Link

Road; 12.28pm: A413 to­wards

Amer­sham; 12.29pm: B485 Frith Hill to­wards Che­sham; 12.32pm: Hyde End; 12.36pm: Che­sham; 12.39pm: St Mary’s Way; 12.40pm: Broad Street; 12.42pm: Vale Road; 12.46pm: Choles­bury

Lane, Hawridge; 12.52pm: Choles­bury Road, Choles­bury; 12.54pm: Kiln Road,

Choles­bury. full rider list, visit www. wom­en­s­tour.co.uk. ALL FOR A GOOD CAUSE: Sam Cock­er­ton is gear­ing up for her Lon­don to Brighton cy­cle race on Sun­day. A CHAR­I­TA­BLE woman will tackle her big­gest chal­lenge yet when she cy­cles from Lon­don to Brighton at the week­end.

Sam Cock­er­ton, 46, from Che­sham, will cy­cle 54 miles when she takes part in an an­nual race on Sun­day.

The pro­lific fundraiser is cy­cling in aid of the Hos­pice of St Fran­cis, Chilterns Dog Res­cue So­ci­ety and the Bri­tish Heart Foun­da­tion, which or­gan­ises the cy­cle event.

Last week­end, to warm-up, Mrs Cock­er­ton cy­cled 30 miles in a RSPCAor­gan­ised ride and raised just un­der £100 for the cause.

She took up cy­cling se­ri­ously in March and has been men­tored by her friend Ken Mun­cie, from Che­sham, who is also tak­ing part in this week­end’s chal­lenge.

Mrs Cock­er­ton, said: “I’m look­ing for­ward to it – the fi­nal bit [Devil’s Dyke] might be a bit tricky, but I’ll com­plete the course.

“Ken’s been great, I wouldn’t have been able to do any of this with­out him”

Ear­lier in the year she also went from hav­ing lus­cious long locks to a num­ber two hair­cut af­ter shav­ing her hair off for the Princess Trust wig char­ity.

Land­lady of the Jolly Sports­man, in Eskdale Av­enue, Deb­o­rah Wil­bee said Mrs Cock­er­ton is the most char­i­ta­ble per­son she knows, adding: “In the short space of time I’ve known her, she’s be­come the most kind and char­i­ta­ble per­son I’ve ever met. She’s such a kind and gen­er­ous per­son.”

The pub is help­ing boost Mrs Cock­er­ton’s fundrais­ing ef­forts by keep­ing spon­sor­ship forms be­hind the bar.

Peo­ple can also spon­sor Mrs Cock­er­ton by vis­it­ing www. just­giv­ing.com/ Sa­man­tha-Cock­er­ton1.

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