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Clacton gears up to host Tour of Britain 2017 stage five time trial

PUBLISHED: 14:01 06 September 2017 | UPDATED: 08:11 07 September 2017

The Tour of Britain races along Hadleigh High Street in 2015, the last time the race came to East Anglia. Picture: PHIL MORLEY/ARCHANT

The Tour of Britain races along Hadleigh High Street in 2015, the last time the race came to East Anglia. Picture: PHIL MORLEY/ARCHANT

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As Clacton prepares to host the time trial stage of the 2017 Tour of Britain today, here is our guide to the day.

The Tour of Britain's time trial stage in Clacton. Picture: GRAPHICS UNITThe Tour of Britain's time trial stage in Clacton. Picture: GRAPHICS UNIT

Stage 5 of Britain’s premier men’s cycling race will see riders battling it out to beat the clock across the 10-mile route.

Graham Briggs, wearing the Eisberg Sprints Jersey, will be the first rider away at 12.01pm, with race leader Elia Viviani the final rider off at 2.04pm. Mark Cavendish, the former world champion, is the 17th rider to depart, at 12.17pm. Live coverage begins on ITV4 at 11.45am. Highlights will be shown on the channel at 8pm tonight and again tomorrow morning.

A relatively flat course, with just a small bump in Holland-on-Sea, cycling fans will be hoping to see some fast times of around 20 minutes posted, with some of the world’s best time triallists – such as Essex’s own Alex Dowsett and world champion Tony Martin – taking part.

That is providing coastal cross winds don’t come into play.

James Gullen, rider for team JLT Condor, and Tour of Britain route director Andy Hawes (left), check out the route in Clacton in advance of the race. Picture: GREGG BROWNJames Gullen, rider for team JLT Condor, and Tour of Britain route director Andy Hawes (left), check out the route in Clacton in advance of the race. Picture: GREGG BROWN

• Preview to the Clacton stage of the Tour of Britain.

For less serious cycling buffs, but those who love the occasion a big sporting event such as this brings, a time trial is also a great chance to see some of the world’s best cyclists individually and to have two hours of spectacle, instead of the ‘blink and you miss it’ as can happen on races as the peloton whizzes past.

Along some parts of the Essex course, spectators will also get the chance to see each rider twice, with six of the 16km route an out-and-back along Marine Parade West.

Roads will be closed from 10.30am to allow final set up on the course, and they will remain shut until the conclusion of the race.

The full road closures (Clacton unless otherwise stated) are:

• Hastings Avenue – from Selsey Avenue to West Road

• West Road – from Hastings Avenue to Marine Parade West

• Marine Parade West – from West Road towards Marine Parade East

• Marine Parade East – from Marine Parade West to Kings Parade, Holland-on-Sea

• Kings Parade, Holland-on-Sea – from Marine Parade East to Kings Avenue, Holland-on-Sea, and from the B1032 (Frinton Road roundabout) to Kings Avenue

• Kings Avenue, Holland-on-Sea – from Kings Parade to Holland Road

• B1032 Holland Road, Holland-on-Sea – from Kings Avenue to Sladbury’s Lane

• Sladbury’s Lane – from B1032 Holland Road to Little Clacton Road

• Great Holland Common Road/Little Clacton Road – from Sladbury’s Lane, to B1032 Clacton Road/Main Road

• B1032 Clacton Road/Main Road – from Great Holland Common Road/Little Clacton Road, to Kings Parade.

Parking is also banned on those stretches of road during the day.

Stage six, the following day, stages in the region with the peloton racing across Suffolk from Newmarket to Aldeburgh.

• Everything you need to know about the Suffolk Stage Six of the Tour of Britain.

Other big names taking part today include Michal Kwiatkowski (1.26pm), Geraint Thomas (1.06pm), and Alexander Kristoff (1.56pm).

Yesterday, Fernando Gaviria inched past Team Sky’s Elia Viviani to prevail in the Tour of Britain’s fourth stage.

Quick-Step Floors star Gaviria won the 165-kilometre stage from Mansfield to Newark but Viviani assumed the overall lead from Caleb Ewan.

Orica Scott rider Ewan is level on time with Viviani with four stages remaining, but has lost the green jersey with the Italian boasting greater consistency. Gaviria now sits third but trails by just six seconds.

Tendring District Council is hoping for thousands of visitors, and expects the event as a whole to boost the local economy by £500,000.

Nigel Brown, communications manager for the council, previously said: “It is not just about visitors on the day. All of the riders, their entourage and the race organisers will need to be put up as well in hotels – and hopefully be fed in our restaurants.

“Even if we don’t get a massive influx of spectators we have the Tour and everything that goes with it, using our local facilities.

“This event is great for people who are not full cycling fans but who want to come out for an international spectacle with Olympians and world champions fighting it out on the streets of Clacton.

“We also hope to get visitors from overseas – perhaps coming in on the ferry to Harwich, or flying into Stansted.

“It is great for the economy, it has got to be a boost.

“It’s not just about the money though, it’s about the legacy. We hope schoolchildren will get involved too, lining the route, and it might inspire them to become the next Laura Trott, Alex Dowsett or Bradley Wiggins.”

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