Sir Bradley defends his Tour of Britain title through Midhurst and Petworth

Great Britain's Bradley Wiggins of Sky Pro Racing (yellow jersey),  during Stage 20 of the Tour de France PA Wire
Great Britain's Bradley Wiggins of Sky Pro Racing (yellow jersey), during Stage 20 of the Tour de France PA Wire

OLYMPIC champion and Tour de France winner Sir Bradley Wiggins will defend his Tour of Britain title when the race comes through the Midhurst and Petworth area early next month.

There are now only four weeks to wait until the cycle race comes through West Sussex on Saturday, September 13.

Wiggins will be competing against a field of more than 100 riders.

Big crowds are expected to attend the event on the day, with major events being planned for Petworth, Horsham and Haywards Heath town centres as competitors race through the towns.

Louise Goldsmith, leader of West Sussex County Council, said: “Hearing that Sir Bradley Wiggins is taking part adds to the excitement.

“It will be wonderful to watch a great champion like him during the race and we hope huge numbers come out onto the streets of the towns and villages along the route to see it live.”

Organisers estimate the race will pass through the following locations at the following times: Kingsley Green – 10.54am; Fernhurst – 10.56am; Easebourne – 11.05am; Tillington – 11.17am; Petworth – 11.20am; Wisborough Green – 11.33am; Five Oaks – 11.44am; Horsham – 11.55am; Handcross – 12.11pm; Staplefield – 12.15pm; Cuckfield Green - 12:21pm; Haywards Heath – 12.25pm; Scaynes Hill – 12.33pm.

There will be rolling road closures all along the route of the race.

A total of 62 police and civilian motorcycles will manage the road closures as the race approaches and enforce the rolling road closure system. Once the race has departed an area, the roads will open again. In practice, roads may be closed from 15 minutes to half an hour, hour.

The Tour of Britain line-up boasts the biggest ever line-up of top tier UCI Pro Teams in the 19-team field, led by Team Sky, Omega Pharma – Quick-Step, Movistar, BMC Racing Team, Tinkoff – Saxo, Garmin Sharp, Team Giant Shimano, and Belkin Pro Cycling.

It will start in Liverpool on Sunday, September 7 and finish in London with an individual time trial and a circuit race on Sunday, September 14.

Concerns have been expressed about the clash of the race with Goodwood Revival Weekend from Setpember 12-14. But West Sussex County Council and the race organiser have spoken to Sussex Police and believe as the cycle race avoids the peak Goodwood traffic times, it can be managed.