All of the partners involved in bringing the Pearl Izumi Tour Series professional bike race to Barrow say they’re raring to go for this week’s big event. On Thursday 15 May a roadshow of some of the UK’s top cyclists will roll into town to compete on the streets of Barrow.

The free event takes place at 7pm and will be preceded by a series of community cycling displays and races.

The Pearl Izumi Tour Series BAE Systems Barrow round is the only event in the 10-round series to take place in the North West and is expected to draw in thousands of people. 

The first race in the series takes place tomorrow (13 May) in Stoke-on-Trent, and follows the success of the inaugural Friends Life Women's Tour, which finished in Bury St Edmunds yesterday and attracted crowds of thousands while capturing national media interest.

Cycling has become one of Britain's fastest growing sports, both for competitors and spectators, following our Olympic success. It is the first time a professional race of this scale has ever taken place in Barrow and the involvement and backing of BAE Systems means the whole town is sure to get behind it.

Partners involved in staging the event with The Pearl Izumi Tour Series organisers SweetSpot include event sponsor Cumbria County Council (the lead agency for highways and traffic management), co-sponsor BAE Systems (who are helping to provide race stewards and other support), Barrow Borough Council (who are providing facilities, co-ordinating volunteers, sweeping the streets and helping to co-ordinate off-street parking) and emergency services including the police, who oversee public events of this scale. The North West Evening Mail has been involved in promoting the event as local media partner.

Cllr David Southward, Cumbria County Council's Cabinet member responsible for economic development, said:
"There's been a huge amount of preparation and planning, and I hope lots of people turn out to make it all worthwhile. This event is going to take over the town for the day and will be a really unique occasion. With sunshine predicted and thousands and thousands of people turning out for the last week’s Women’s Tour of Britain, all the omens look good for an evening to remember.”

Jackie Arnold, Head of Business Strategy at BAE Systems Maritime-Submarines, said:
“Our sponsorship of this event has been really well received by our employees – and not just from those who enjoy cycling. A number have come forward to volunteer to steward the event and help demonstrate what a great place Barrow is to live and work.

“Many others will also be helping us host a recruitment fair in Forum 28 to highlight the wide range of jobs we have available. It is open on the day of the race from 10am until 4pm for people to call in for more information, an informal chat or to leave their CV.

“We are looking forward to seeing the event take shape over the next few days and hope to see as many spectators as possible track-side to help make the Barrow heat a real success.”

Cllr Tony Callister, Barrow Borough Council spokesperson on sport, commented:
"I am immensely proud that Barrow was chosen to host this prestigious event.  It has been great to involve our local cycling clubs in the build up to the event, culminating in the opportunity to organise amateur races for juniors and adults on a street circuit prior to the professionals racing. The whole event is so good for the local economy – the shops, market, cafes, bars and hotels and a terrific opportunity to showcase the locality.”

Mayor of Barrow Cllr Marie Derbyshire said:
“As the newly elected mayor for Barrow and the Borough I am delighted that one of my first local civic engagements is to be able to witness this fantastic event. I know that the people of our Borough will, like myself, be there to support them and wish all who are taking part good luck.”

Inspector Matt Pearman of Cumbria Constabulary, said:
“We are delighted to see such an event come to Barrow that will showcase professionals at the top of their sport and inspire those watching.

“We hope that everyone in Barrow and those that come to the area to watch the event enjoy themselves responsibly. We have worked closely with partner agencies in order to provide a safe environment for cyclists, supporters and residents alike.”