MOST of the world's top cycling teams will ride into north Essex this year as the Women's Tour arrives in Colchester and Clacton.

The towns will host the penultimate stage of the race, the most prestigious women's race in Britain, this October.

Twelve of the 15 top teams in the world have now been confirmed to compete at the rescheduled edition of the event, which was originally planned for June, with a total of 16 teams competing.

Amongst these are previous winners SD Worx and the squads of four of the race’s previous overall winners Trek-Segafredo, Team DSM, Canyon SRAM Racing and Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling.

British interest comes in the form of two tour debutants, AWAL O'Shea and Essex-based CAMS-Basso Bikes as well as Drops-Le Col s/b TEMPU.

The full list of teams competing in the 2021 Women’s Tour is:

• Alé BTC Ljubljana (Italy)

• AWOL O’Shea (Great Britain)

• CAMS-Basso Bikes (Great Britain)

• Canyon SRAM Racing (Germany)

• Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling (Germany)

• Drops-Le Col s/b TEMPUR. (Great Britain)

• FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope (France)

• Liv Racing (Netherlands)

• Movistar Team (Spain)

• Parkhotel Valkenburg (Netherlands)

• SD Worx (Netherlands)

• Team BikeExchange (Australia)

• Team DSM (Germany)

• Team TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank (USA)

• Trek-Segafredo (USA)

• Valcar-Travel & Service (Italy)

The event is expect to bring a financial boost to both Colchester and Tendring, with an influx of tourists expected as well as interest from residents.

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Boost - the Tour Series cycling race in Colchester High Street back in 2013. Picture: Larry HickmottBoost - the Tour Series cycling race in Colchester High Street back in 2013. Picture: Larry Hickmott

Paul Dundas, leader of Colchester Council, said: "It is thrilling to hear the announcement today that sixteen elite cycling teams from around the globe will be coming to Colchester to compete in October.

"This is a wonderful opportunity to put Colchester on the world’s stage and I’m sure residents, schools, businesses and visitors will turn out in their thousands to cheer them on through the borough.”

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Alex Porter, Tendring's Council's leisure and tourism chief, added: "It is exciting to see just what an international spectacle we have coming to our district, showcasing our beautiful area to the world.

"It’s also pleasing to see we have some local teams – and therefore hopefully some local riders – we can cheer on as the thrill of a cycle race unfolds on the roads of the Essex Sunshine Coast.”

Full details of the Women's Tour, such as stage routes and timetables, are set to be announced shortly.

Colchester Council's trading firm Colchester Amphora Trading is working with promoters SweetSpot to run the event, which will launch from the new Northern Gateway Sports Park.

The race is returning to Clacton for a third time.

The Colchester to Clacton stage take place on Friday, October 8.