Irish sprinter Sam Bennett will return to the Tour of Britain for the first time in 2023, 10 years on from claiming the maiden win of his illustrious professional career at the UK’s leading cycle race.
Bennett has been confirmed as part of the provisional BORA – hansgrohe line-up for the race, which begins in Greater Manchester on Sunday 3 September.
The 32-year-old claimed an emotional victory on the fifth stage of the 2013 edition in Caerphilly; coincidentally, the Welsh town will host the stage finish of this year’s final stage on Sunday 10 September.
He has taken over 60 professional wins since, including multiple victories in each of cycling’s three Grand Tours: the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia, and Vuelta a Espana. Bennett (32) also won the prestigious Tour de France points jersey in 2020.
Bennett said: “I’m delighted to be back at the Tour of Britain this year. I think the race has a lot of opportunities for sprinters, and we should have a strong team there with BORA – hansgrohe.
“I have great memories of Caerphilly. The last time I raced there it was at a make or break point in my career. If I didn’t get the win that day I would have been going back to college in Ireland. But I got my stage win, which allowed me to turn pro with NetApp – Endura the following year. Without that stage, I wouldn’t be here today.”
The remainder of the BORA – hansgrohe line-up for the Tour of Britain will be announced in due course.
The Tour of Britain has an illustrious list of former winners, including two-time world champion Julian Alaphillipe (2018), Dutch fan favourite Mathieu van der Poel (2019), and Belgian star Wout Van Aert (2021). Since 2016, the race has been watched by an average of 1.3m roadside spectators and has generated £27.6m of yearly net economic benefit for the UK economy, according to research by Frontline.
ITV4 will continue to broadcast live flag-to-flag coverage of every stage and nightly highlights show, allowing fans in the UK to watch wherever they are.