Kittel, Tanfield & Hass to ride TDY 2019
Marcel Kittel is the latest star rider to confirm his attendance at the 2019 Tour de Yorkshire and will be joined by Katusha Alpecin team-mates Harry Tanfield and Nathan Haas.
Kittel is regarded as one of the finest sprinters in the world and has not raced in Yorkshire since 2015. The year before that the German romped to victory on the opening stage of the Tour de France into Harrogate and had the honour of wearing the iconic yellow jersey on the second stage between York and Sheffield.
The 30 year old has already claimed a victory this season at the Trofeo Palma and will no-doubt be on the hunt for more successes in Yorkshire.
Speaking about his appearance in Yorkshire, Kittel said: “It’s going to be nice to be back in Yorkshire because of all the memories I have from 2014. It's a great experience to race there in front of all those spectators and I'm looking forward to it.”
Katusha Alpecin have also revealed that home favourite Harry Tanfield will also be in action between 2-5 May. Tanfield, who hails from Great Ayton, pulled off one of the most memorable wins in the race’s history last year when he achieved a stunning solo success in Doncaster. That result earned him a spell in the blue leader’s jersey and he also enjoyed stints in both the best sprinter and most active rider jerseys before the race was out.
He said: “Last year’s win was the best result I’ve ever had and the Tour de Yorkshire is so well known. After stage one I was wearing a jersey every day. I couldn't believe it. It's one of those things that you think will never happen. Just being able to keep a jersey on my back the whole time was pretty cool and I can’t wait to ride it again in Katusha Alpecin colours.”
The only jersey Tanfield didn’t wear in 2018 was the best climber’s jersey, and the winner of that prize in 2016 - Australia’s Nathan Haas – has confirmed he will also be back.
Haas is currently riding the Ardennes Classics but will jet into Yorkshire early next week to ensure he is good to go on Thursday 2nd May.
He said: “The Tour de Yorkshire is brilliant. It's a growing event and ever since I last raced there in 2016, I’ve been wanting to come back. The fans are some of the wildest and most committed I’ve ever known. In 2016 the final stage was seriously cold but the hills were lined out with fans making a noise like I couldn’t believe. Safe to say, I'm excited to be coming back.”
The Katusha Alpecin trio join four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome in announcing their intentions to ride, while Yorkshire star Lizzie Deignan will also be competing in the Asda Tour de Yorkshire Women’s Race which takes place between 3-4 May. More big-names are expected to be revealed in the coming days.
All those riders are set to appear onstage at the Tour de Yorkshire Eve of Tour celebrations in Millennium Square in Leeds between 6-7pm on Wednesday 1 May. This free event offers fans the perfect chance to get close to the riders before racing begins.