Brands Hatch was today announced as the venue for the 2012 Paralympic road cycling events. The motor racing circuit near Sevenoaks, Kent will form the core of all 32 road race and time trial events, which are scheduled to take place between 5 and 8 September. The former Formula One Grand Prix circuit will form approximately half the course, including the start and finish. Local roads will make up the remainder of the route.
The announcement marks the final venue to be confirmed for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and pays homage to Brands Hatch’s cycling roots – it first developed in the 1920s as a grass track cycle racing venue. It’s only an hour away from the Athletes’ Village in London’s Olympic Park.
Pat McQuaid, president of the International Cycling Union, said: “The UCI are delighted with Brands Hatch as the location for the London 2012 Paralympic road cycling events. The motor racing circuit and local roads combine to provide a circuit that challenges the athletes and one that will undoubtedly create some spectacular races and worthy winners next summer.”
Some 225 (155 male and 70 female) athletes from 40 nations will participate in the Paralympic road cycling events, which will consist of mass-start road races ranging from 30km to 120km and individual and team time trials ranging from 20km to 35km. Participants will have a range of disabilities including visual impairments, cerebral palsy and amputations, and will compete on bicycles, tricycles, tandems and hand cycles. Entry to Brands Hatch will be by ticket only but spectators will be able to view racing on the rest of the route for free.