Organisers of the star-studded Tour of the Wolds have declared the event a success and revealed: “We’d love to be back next year.”
Thousands of people descended on Louth during Sunday to watch some of cycling’s biggest names take part in elite men’s and women’s races.
It was the first time the event had been held in Louth and race director Dan Ellmore said he hoped to stage the event again next year.
Mr Ellmore told the Leader: ”It was a fantastic day, absolutely brilliant.
“I’d just like to thank everyone who turned out on the day.
“The crowds were amazing and we were lucky with the weather, but what a great day.
“Everyone is saying they enjoyed the event.
“It’s early days yet, but we’d love to be back next year.”
The elite races featured spectacular sprint finishes in Louth town centre, as riders were welcomed back with roars of enthusiasm.
The route also took in some of the most spectacular scenery that the Wolds has to offer, stretching as far north as Caistor, where many riders floundered on a daunting climb in the stamina-sapping heat.
Mr Ellmore said the event had taken a ‘hell of a lot of organising’ but added that the hard work had paid off.
He thanked an ‘army of volunteers’ who helped the races pass off without a problem. It’s likely he will hold talks with major backers - and local authorities involved - to seal an agreement for 2018.
The men’s race was won by Australian star Brenton Jones, with Great Britain’s Lizzy Banks taking the women’s crown.
A number of Olympic medallists failed to win a place on the podium on race day - due to the very high level of competition.
There were unconfirmed reports that Bradley Wiggins was among the spectators on a section of the route.
It’s likely the local economy received a massive boost from the action-packed weekend, with more than 300 amateur riders taking part in an amateur Sportive event that was held on the Saturday, thanks to organisers ITP events. Organiser of the sportive, Ian Pemrose told the Leader that they had received double the turn out of last year’s event.
“We had about double the figures from last year’s event, which we’re really pleased with.”
Sunday’s pro races were part of the British Cycling Series and officials from the organisation were delighted with the success of the event.
The only slight drawback was that some spectators called for more businesses to open, and more entertainment to be staged between races.