TOP world cyclists are set to pedal from Colchester to Clacton in the first international stage race for women.

Stage five of AJ Bell Women’s Tour takes place on October 8 and excitement is already building up.

The route will start at Colchester’s Northern Gateway Sports Park, with riders completing a lap of the closed road cycle circuit before heading into Tendring.

Pedalling through the finish line at Clacton seafront after 32km, cyclists will then complete at 63.5km loop around the district, in what is the shortest road stage of the 2021 race.

Tendring councillor Alex Porter, responsible for leisure and tourism, said: “There’s not long to go now, and we really hope that people come out to line the route from start to finish, to watch and enjoy this spectacle and hopefully be inspired to be active themselves.

“Earlier this month we saw the Tour of Britain, the men’s equivalent race, draw huge crowds out along each stage and I really hope that Colchester and Tendring residents, boosted by cycling fans from across the region, can rise to the occasion and match that to cheer on these elite athletes.”

Colchester council leader Paul Dundas added: “Colchester is hugely proud to support this global event and our ambitions for Stage 5 are to celebrate this fantastic part of Essex, attract thousands of visitors to the area, boost the local economy and encourage all of us to lead fitter, healthier lives.

“Lockdown has taught us how important keeping active is to our physical and mental wellbeing, so this is a great opportunity to gain inspiration from some of the world’s most elite sports women.”

For more information about the Women’s Tour visit