The annual charity ride formerly known as the Kirklees Cycle Sportive has been renamed the Brian Robinson Cycle Challenge. It is hoped the new name will reduce confusion – many riders assumed Kirklees was in Scotland, not the Pennines – as well as honouring the achievements of one of Britain’s cycling pioneers.
Robinson, from nearby Mirfield, represented Great Britain in the 1952 Olympic road race, along with his brother Desmond, and went on to achieve further fame as a continental professional cyclist in the 1950s and early ‘60s. He was the first British cyclist to complete the Tour de France and to win a stage, and the first to win the prestigious Criterium De Dauphine Libere, a precursor to the Tour.
The Kirklees sportive takes place on the last Sunday in April, in the Pennines around Huddersfield. Organiser Martyn Bolt said: “After some deliberation and looking at various options for using Brian’s name, we chose the Brian Robinson Cycle Challenge, as it exactly says what the event is all about. The ride is aimed at allowing riders to enjoy themselves and raise money for good causes but is without doubt challenging.”
Robinson said: “I’ve ridden every inch of this route many times and I know riders are in for a memorable experience. We hope the support on the day, in terms of HQ, marshals and feeder stations, will make sure cyclists can take the route at whatever speed they like, but will finish the ride knowing they’ve had a good workout.”
To find out more, visit https://www.sportident.co.uk/entries/event.php?event_id=193. News of the charities which will benefit from this year’s event will be announced shortly.