Tour de France supremo Gary Verity to be honoured with top Yorkshire cycling award

Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive Gary Verity
Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive Gary Verity
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The man credited with bringing the Tour de France to Yorkshire will be awarded Yorkshire cycling’s highest honour in the New Year.

Gary Verity, chief executive of tourism agency Welcome to Yorkshire, has been named the recipient of The C A Rhodes Memorial Award 2014 by the Yorkshire Cycling Federation (YCF).

Named after Charles Arthur Rhodes, who cofounded the organisation in 1932, the award is the regarded as the greatest distinction the federation can bestow.

Mr Verity helped secure and deliver the July 5 to 7 spectacle, which saw an estimated 4.8million people line the three stage routes in Yorkshire and beyond.

A statement from the YCF’s court of trustees said: “Against the odds he beat strong competition to secure the 2014 Grand Depart.

“The visit by the Tour was an outstanding success, with vast crowds lining the routes of stage one through the Yorkshire Dales from Leeds to Harrogate and stage two from York to Sheffield via the West Riding and gruelling Pennine climbs. “Outstanding racing by the world’s top professional riders was on display and a worldwide audience of many millions saw God’s Own County at its finest.”

Previous winners include Yorkshire Tour de France legends Brian Robinson and Barry Hoban as well as Ed Clancy, David Stone, Lizzie Armitstead and Beryl Burton.

Mr Verity will be presented the award at the YCF Annual Luncheon on February 22.