Bumper crowd welcomes Tour de Yorkshire final stage and Chris Lawless to Leeds

Tour de France spectators on The Headrow in Leeds. Picture by Steve Riding.
Tour de France spectators on The Headrow in Leeds. Picture by Steve Riding.

If the rain ensured a quieter presence at the roadsides in this year's Tour de Yorkshire, nobody told Leeds.

The banging and cheering continued from the moment the peloton wound its way around Otley to the dizzying speed of the last stretch on The Headrow to finish the race's fourth and final stage.

A bumper crowd turned out.

A bumper crowd turned out.

A bumper crowd turned out to ensure a huge welcome for Chris Lawless, who triumphed to become the first Briton to win the competition overall.

Gordon Airy, 65, of Roundhay, attends the event every year after being a tour maker, helping to marshal the Grand Depart of the Tour de France in 2014.

He said: "What's better than cycling in Yorkshire?

"The crowds are amazing and everybody's really friendly with everybody else. We even speak to Lancashire people."

Youngsters from the Ingram Road Primary School were enjoying the scenes in Millennium Square - which had foot and drink stalls, the cycling on the big screen and live music - after taking part in the children's race.

Michelle Wilson, aged 11, said: "It was just a different experience."

Super deputy supervisor Peter Adrendt was one of the 130 tour makers out for the final stage of the race.

The 66-year-old Bradfordian said: "It's fantastic, exhilarating, wonderful, exciting - oh, I could say a number of wonderful things about it.

"It's a privilege to be here as a tour maker."

He added: "Yorkshire has achieved something wonderful and I think in the future Yorkshire will be renowned as the cycling county of England."

A group of anti-fracking protesters also waved placards at the finish line in opposition to Ineos, which now sponsors what was Team Sky.

Ann Chapman, a coordinator with Frack Free Leeds, said: "We love cycling. We're campaigning for a healthier, cleaner environment in Yorkshire."