TOUR DE YORKSHIRE LAND ART AND BEST DRESSED WINNERS HONOURED!
The winners of the 2019 Tour de Yorkshire Land Art and Best Dressed competitions have received their prizes at a special event at the Welcome to Yorkshire office in Leeds.
Welcome to Yorkshire’s Commercial Director Peter Dodd presented the four lucky winners of the Best Dressed competition with a commemorative plaque, while the team who triumphed in the Land Art competition were awarded the coveted Tour de Yorkshire Land Art Trophy.
Entries for both competitions were submitted in the run up to the race before being shortlisted and put to public votes. Thousands of nominations were counted and the winners of each competition – who were announced last month – are as follows:
Best Dressed Village – Kippax
This is the second year in a row that Kippax has won this award and the villagers went to extraordinary lengths once again to ensure the race received a stand-out welcome on stage two. The whole community came together to decorate the village and seemingly every inch was adorned with balloons, flags and bunting. Numerous shops had amazing window displays, the brownies and guides created scarecrows on bikes, and Kippax in Bloom ensured there were hundreds of yellow and blue flowers planted to mark the occasion.
Best Dressed Town – Pontefract
Pontefract also featured on day two and went to town (pardon the pun!) with a whole host of imaginative creations. Various community groups and businesses worked together to make an outstanding impression. Over 50 bikes were put up around town along with a massive 3.5km of bunting. Handmade pom poms were also hung from trees along the route and three giant cycling jerseys were draped over central landmarks. Add to that a host of flags and specially decorated bike wheels, and it was no surprise that Pontefract proved so popular with the voters.
Best Dressed Host Location – Bedale
Bedale was awash with colour as the men’s and women’s pelotons reached their exciting conclusions on 3rd May. Like every host location, the town pulled out all the stops to provide a brilliant backdrop to the action. Yellow and blue cardboard cyclists were displayed on every street with large Yorkshire flags and miles and miles of bunting. Numerous shopkeepers also produced striking window displays and all the schools in town worked hard to create some spectacular land art pieces. Even the church bells rang out to welcome the riders home as Bedale made a more-than memorable impression.
Spirit of le Tour – Paul Flintoft from Kippax
The Spirit of le Tour award recognises an individual, community or business that fully embraced the essence of the Tour, and Paul Flintoft is a more than worthy recipient. Paul worked tirelessly to bring Kippax together ahead of the race and his butcher’s shop on the High Street became the nerve centre the village’s unbelievable support. His Tour de Yorkshire-themed window dressing was a joy to behold and he spent hours sourcing, painting and installing yellow and blue bikes, flags and bunting around the village, as well as blowing up countless balloons and distributing them to other shops along the route. He also led an enthusiastic band of volunteers to get everything ready for the race and made sure all the local media were aware of Kippax’s unbelievable celebrations. Kippax was transformed into a sea of yellow and blue and Paul deserves special praise for his vital role in making that happen.
Land Art Competition – A winking goose and turkey riding Chopper bikes, Goose Eye
This humorous artwork was created as a joint venture between Goose Eye residents and the Fields of Vision land art team with funding support from Bradford Council. The designs were painted onto fields near the top of the Côte de Goose Eye climb which featured on the fourth and final stage of the men’s race. It is the second time in three years that Fields of Vision and Bradford Council have been involved in the winning design, following their successful Branwell Brontë on a Bicycle entry in Haworth in 2017.
Andrew Wood is the leader of the Fields of Vision team and in his entry, he explained the thinking that went into the design:
The birds were winking so only one goose eye could be seen (as a subtle nod to the village’s name) and as a way of saying hello to people around the world watching on TV. Yorkshire roses were then used as the eyeballs, and a turkey also featured as it is another bird synonymous with the village. Turkeys are reared at local farms and the only pub in the village is named after that particular animal. Finally, Choppers were chosen as the bike of choice for the birds to be riding on as they have an iconic design and were a popular choice for recreational cyclists to learn to ride on during the 70s and 80s.
Welcome to Yorkshire Commercial Director Peter Dodd said: “It’s a great pleasure to honour all the brilliant people and locations who went above and beyond to make this year’s Tour de Yorkshire another resounding success. Despite some challenging weather, we were still wowed by the crowds as communities came together to sing, dance and cheer on the riders. With spectacular decorations and miles of flags and bunting they did the county proud and put on a brilliant show for the record TV audience of 28 million watching in 190 countries around the world.
“Today’s winners deserve a huge of amount of praise but we’re also recognising all the other people, villages, towns and cities who went to great lengths to celebrate our race as well. The amount of effort that goes in to welcoming the Tour de Yorkshire is truly remarkable and we couldn’t be more grateful for all the support people give the race.”
The 2019 edition took place between 2-5 May and saw Chris Lawless become the first British winner of the men’s race while legendary cyclist Marianne Vos took the Asda Tour de Yorkshire Women’s Race title.