All four of Britain’s male UCI Continental teams and a Great Britain national squad have today been unveiled as the first confirmed squads for the Tour of Britain 2022 (Sunday 4 – Sunday 11 September).
As one of only two men’s UCI races in the UK – and the only one aired on TV – the Tour of Britain provides vital exposure for UK teams, so the inclusion of all four UCI Continental is a boost for the domestic scene.
Wiv SunGod will compete in their national tour for the fifth edition running, while Ribble Weldtite Pro Cycling, Saint Piran and TRINITY Racing return having all made their race debuts in 2021.
The Great Britain Cycling Team – who have ridden 14 of the 17 modern Tours to date, including every edition since 2012 – complete today’s team announcement.
Tour of Britain organiser SweetSpot and British Cycling have issued invites to the quartet of UCI Continental teams in recognition of the challenging sponsorship climate that they continue to face.
This year’s race begins in Aberdeen on Sunday 4 September and culminates with a first-ever visit to the Isle of Wight a week later. Details of the UCI World and Pro Teams competing in this year’s race will be announced in July.
Hampshire-based Wiv SunGod have enjoyed significant success at the Tour since their first participation in 2017, most notably winning both the ŠKODA King of the Mountains and sprints jerseys last year with Jake Scott. Their 16-man roster also includes newly-crowned Irish road race champion Rory Townsend, as well as Matt Bostock, who won the British circuit race championships in Kirkcudbright, Scotland, last Friday.
Ribble Weldtite Pro Cycling impressed on their Tour of Britain debut in 2021, recording four top-10 stage finishes and having the highest overall finisher – James Shaw – of the domestic teams. Six of their 16-rider squad could potentially get to race on home roads in this year’s race. Most notably, siblings and Commonwealth Games 2018 medallists Charlie and Harry Tanfield, are from the North Yorkshire village of Great Ayton, which is raced through on stage four. Additionally, Stuart Balfour hails from the Scottish Borders, where stage two takes place (Hawick to Duns, Monday 5 September). Ollie Peckover and Ross Lamb are both from Nottinghamshire, host county for stage five (West Bridgford to Mansfield, Thursday 8 September), while selection would allow for Will Brown to race through his home town of Whitby on day four.
Also returning for a second-year running are Saint Piran, Cornwall’s first elite cycling team. Their roster was bolstered for 2022 by the arrival of sprinter Gabz Cullaigh, who has recorded three top-10 stage finishes in the Tour, most recently on the final day of last year’s race in Aberdeen. New signing Alex Richardson will make his debut for the team this week having been pipped to the British road race title by cycling legend Mark Cavendish in Castle Douglas, Scotland, on Sunday.
TRINITY Racing have quickly become one of the most-respected development teams in world cycling, with the performances of then-Irish road race champion Ben Healy in last year’s race helping him move up to UCI WorldTeam level with EF Education – EasyPost for 2022. The team’s roster includes Californian rider Luke Lamperti, who successfully defended his American circuit race title in Tennessee last week and finished fourth in Warrington on stage five in 2021.
The involvement of a Great Britain national team allows future stars to gain invaluable experience in one of the world’s leading races. Among those who have lined up in the race in home colours are 2021 Giro d’Italia champion Tao Geoghegan Hart, 2018 Vuelta a Espana victor Simon Yates and Grand Tour stage winner Hugh Carthy.
Featured photo: SWpix.com. 2021 AJ Bell Tour of Britain Stage 5.