CYCLISTS taking part in this year’s Yorkshire Wolds Cycle Challenge will find themselves taking a completely different direction.

Ryedale Special Families has announced the fourth Yorkshire Wolds Cycle Challenge, will, for the first time, involve tackling the route in the opposite direction.

The 146-mile circular route was originally designed and signposted to be cycled in both directions. However, for the first three years, the two-day challenge stuck to the clockwise version of the route.

This year’s event will take place over the weekend of July 12 and 13, with cyclists covering 73 miles at their own pace each day.

Cyclists of all ages and abilities are welcome and full medical and mechanical support is provided.

It will start and finish at Norton College, with the halfway overnight camp at Hutton Cranswick Sports Centre, where there will be a barbecue, licensed bar and live music.

Event organiser Rob Davies, fundraising co-ordinator for Ryedale Special Families, said: “After the incredibly successful event last year, we received quite a few requests from people who had done it two or even three times before in the opposite direction, so, in true Tour de France style, we decided to reverse the route. In fact, I was ignorant to the fact that the Tour de France alternates between a clockwise and anti-clockwise direction each year, so we thought it fitting to make the change this year with the Tour starting in Yorkshire the previous weekend.”

Rob said that since its launch the event have raised almost £40,000. He said they were delighted that their corporate sponsors had all agreed to continue with their support and would like to say a huge thank you to Bannister’s Farm, Big Bear Bikes, Escada Systems, Inntravel and Wold Top Brewery.

Anyone interested in taking part should go to Entry fees are £30 to reserve a place, which includes luggage transfer to and from the halfway campsite, Saturday evening barbecue, Sunday morning breakfast, as well as full back-up and support along the way.

In addition, cyclists are asked to commit to raising a further £50 in sponsorship by the time of the event in July.

This year, an award will be made to the group which raises the highest amount of sponsorship, and any individual raising £350 or more will receive a commemorative T-shirt.