Feeling the love for cycling events

Promising Peebles rider Katy Winton was crowned last years Queen of the Hill.
Promising Peebles rider Katy Winton was crowned last years Queen of the Hill.

CYCLING in the Borders has been given a major boost after EventScotland and Scottish Borders Council announced their support for both TweedLove Bike Festival and the Tour o’ the Borders road sportive events this year.

The 10-day Tweedlove festival, which runs from May 24 to June 2, incorporates everything from gentle family rides to top-level mountain bike races, attracting some of the world’s top professional cyclists. Now in its fourth year, TweedLove is already estimated to be worth £500,000 to the local economy.

Also in it’s fourth year, the increasingly popular tour is a one-day road event on April 14 which sees up to 1,000 riders take in 112km of quiet roads through beautiful landscapes.

Featuring big alpine-style climbs and sweeping descents, the race is already garnering an international reputation with entrants from as far afield as the US and Canada.

And it’s not just the participants giving the events a global feel – international sponsors are also getting in on the act. Swedish extreme sports brand POC will sponsor TweedLove’s King and Queen of the Hill enduro event, whilst Norwegian company Sweet Protection will do the same for the festival’s Dual Slalom race.

However, TweedLove’s title sponsor is very much a home grown affair – with Scottish cycle shop chain Alpine Bikes, which has stores in both Innerleithen and Glentress, taking the role of lead supporter again for 2013. Organisers are also delighted to receive support from other local businesses such as Cycle Law Scotland, a specialist legal firm based in Peebles which has made a commitment to support the home grown success story of the local festival.

Neil Dalgleish, who organises both Tweedlove and the tour, said: “I’m delighted that both events are attracting such great support. The events have attracted cyclists from all over the UK and beyond and it’s a great opportunity to show them just how special the Tweed Valley, and the Borders, are.

“The Scottish Borders is widely recognised as probably the best cycling destination in the UK, and the level of support for these events locally, nationally and internationally, is testimony to that. We are hugely grateful to these funders and sponsors for their continuing support.”