Northamptonshire cycling ace Hannah Barnes to compete in this year’s Women’s Tour

Hannah Barnes has confirmed she will ride in the 2015 Aviva Women's Tour. Image by GCC5 Photography.
Hannah Barnes has confirmed she will ride in the 2015 Aviva Women's Tour. Image by GCC5 Photography.

Northamptonshire cyclist Hannah Barnes is set to race through her home county once again this year after the ace confirmed her place on next month’s Aviva Women’s Tour.

Towcester athlete Hannah will lead the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling team during this year’s tour, which is due to start at Bury St Edmunds on Wednesday, June 17 and finish in Hemel Hempstead on June 21.

The cycling event is to pass through Northamptonshire on June 20, during stage three of the event between Oundle and Kettering.

However, unlike last year, which saw the final stage of the tour finish outside the Guildhall in Northampton, the event will only take a route through the north of the county, including Brixworth.

Commenting on the announcement, Rachel Heal, director for UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling said: “The Women’s Tour was a fantastic race to be a part of last year. The race showcased the excitement of women’s racing, and the support from the fans lining the roads was absolutely incredible. UnitedHealthcare is excited to be returning for 2015, we’ve had a great season so far, and the team will be firing on all cylinders in Britain.”

Miss Barnes finished eighth overall in 2014, scoring top five finishes on both the opening and closing stages.

Her team mates will include multiple World and Commonwealth Games medallist Linda Villumsen, New Zealand Road Race Champion Rushlee Buchanan and 2010 World Track Championship Bronze medallist and Katie Hall, who recently won the opening stage and finished fourth overall at the Amgen Tour of California.

The 2014 edition of the race, won by Marianne Vos, saw hundreds of thousands of spectators turn out at the roadside, with many more around the UK watching the ITV4 highlights.