Medway to host National Cycling Championships
Medway to host National Cycling Championships

Britain’s top national cyclists will be competing in Medway next year following British Cycling’s announcement that Rochester will host the 2019 HSBC UK | National Circuit Championships.

On Sunday, 21 July 2019, the nation’s best male and female cyclists will be racing along Rochester’s cobbled streets and past the historic sights to compete to earn the title of national champion.

Crowds from across Britain are expected to descend upon Medway to watch the well-known, talented riders. Previous national circuit champions include Katie Archibald, Tom Pidcock, Joanna Rowsell Shand and Lizzie Deignan.

Although the precise course will be unveiled nearer the event, it is due to provide a stunning backdrop with Rochester being home to a Norman castle, ancient cathedral and river esplanade.

Jonathan Rigby, British Cycling’s Commercial Director, said: “We’re thrilled to award the 2019 HSBC UK | National Circuit Championships to Rochester in Medway. The area is steeped in history, and will provide a wonderfully picturesque backdrop to what will be some fantastic racing.

“The championships are one of the highlights of the road racing calendar, and always prove a huge draw for spectators. Rochester will be no exception, and we look forward to working alongside Medway Council to deliver another truly memorable championships.”

Medway Council Leader, Cllr Alan Jarrett, said: “We are delighted that British Cycling has awarded Medway the honour of hosting the 2019 HSBC UK | National Circuit Championships. The historic town of Rochester will provide a spectacular, challenging and an exhilarating course for both the men and women’s races.

“The event is expected to attract thousands of visitors to the area keen to see the cyclists competing, and giving local businesses a boost and putting Medway firmly on the map. It will also provide a fantastic day for local people and I hope as many residents as possible are able to get out and support this national cycling event.

“Medway has a strong link to cycling, having previously hosted a stage of the Tour de France. We have invested in providing more than 70 miles of on and off-road cycling routes and opened a new BMX pump track for riders of all abilities to enjoy. We also organise guided cycling groups to encourage people to explore Medway’s greenspaces and stay active. Medway has a strong cycling community with many local clubs, and I am looking forward to seeing and hearing the crowds cheer in Rochester in July 2019 in support of Britain’s top national cyclists.”

Medway has a strong track record of hosting national, and international, sporting events. Medway’s excellent facilities have hosted pre-Olympic training camps. There are four council-run sports facilities in Medway, and one of them – Medway Park – is renowned for being a centre of sporting excellence. It is home to England Wheelchair Rugby League, and the modern sports facility has hosted international events such as table tennis and handball. The athletics track, swimming pool and diving pit, as well as sports halls are frequently used for training and to host competitions.

Visitors to Medway are also attracted by the heritage on offer, including Upnor Castle, Eastgate House, the Guildhall Museum and Historic Dockyard Chatham. They are also spoilt for choice when it comes to the sociable scene, such as the waterfront bars and restaurants.

With Medway’s ongoing regeneration programme which is providing more facilities and opportunities for all, and an exciting line-up of sports events, 2019 is already looking to be an exciting year for Medway!