After many months of planning – and a year of delay, thanks to the pandemic – Cornwall will finally get to make history when it hosts the start of the Tour of Britain race for the first time this weekend.

Cyclists from around the world will be gathering at the start line in Penzance this Sunday, as the curtain-raiser to the annual international cycling race.

Mark Cavendish has been announced as the first headline racer for this year's Tour of Britain, racing for the Belgian side Deceuninck-Quick-Step for this year's event.

The ‘Grand Depart’ will take place in Penzance at 11 am, and throughout the day cyclists will battle to be first across the winning line as the first stage winds through 111 miles of Cornwall, ending in Bodmin on Sunday afternoon.

The race then continues for a further seven stages through Devon, Wales, Cheshire and Cumbria, on to Edinburgh, finishing in Aberdeen on September 12.

The annual Tour of Britain is the UK’s leading professional multi-stage cycling race and the biggest free to watch spectator event in the country. It is televised live on ITV4 and Eurosport to at least 500,000 viewers, and also covered nationally on BBC Radio 5 Live and by local broadcasters.

To watch the riders as they compete for the King of the Mountain, the locations are Zennor, Rosewall Hill and Carnon Downs. The locations for the Sprint will be Hayle and Penryn.

n A map showing the route for the first stage of the Tour of Britain in Cornwall

n A map showing the route for the first stage of the Tour of Britain in Cornwall

Here is some advice on how to get the best view:

• Spectators are advised to use existing off-highway cycle routes, especially at the busy start and finish locations of Penzance (from Marazion) and Bodmin (using the Camel trail).

• For cars, there will be a special event Park and Ride service for the finish at Bodmin next to the rugby club (just off the A30). And there are the usual summer season Park and Ride facilities for Newquay and Falmouth along with the permanent Truro Park and Ride service.

• In areas where public parking is allowed, car parking spaces will be available on a first come, first served basis.

• Where current traffic and parking arrangements could become a risk to the safety of spectators and riders, on-street parking restrictions will be put in place. You may be asked to move your car if you use on-street parking near where the race passes. This is part of a sequence of no stopping areas or ‘clearways'. Alternative parking is being considered in some areas and information on this will be provided ahead of the event.

• For both the start and finish those with special needs will have easy access to the route. Reasonable attempts will be made for those with access needs, and areas allocated to give wheelchair users an unobstructed view of the race as it passes by.

• In Penzance and Bodmin there will be giant TV screens so everyone can follow the action. Live TV and radio coverage and aerial photography will draw a worldwide audience.

n Two of Cornwall’s elite cyclists join Penzance Town Council and Cornwall Council for the Tour of Britain countdown

n Two of Cornwall’s elite cyclists join Penzance Town Council and Cornwall Council for the Tour of Britain countdown

THE current estimated timings for when riders will be entering through each area on their route through Cornwall – and when rolling road closures will be in place while the cyclists progress through – can be found below.

These are approximate timings calculated from an average speed of 40km per hour and will vary depending on the performance of the leading riders and the overall peloton on the day.

Among them are a number of ‘key’ moments in the race, which are likely to be among the busiest points for spectators.

These are the start location at Penzance Western Promenade, where cyclists will begin the race at 11am, then 11.48 am at Zennor for the first ‘King of the Mountain’, 11.54 am at Rosewall Hill for the second King of the Mountain, and 12.10 pm at Hayle for the first Sprint.

The second sprint will be in Penryn at approximately 1.28pm, followed at 1.38pm in Carnon Downs by the third King of the Mountain.The first day of racing is due to end in Bodmin at 3.30pm.

Race timings:

11.00 am – Penzance Western Promenade - START

11.28 am – St Just

11.30 am – Botallack

11.33 am – Pendeen

11.37 am – Morvah

11.48 am – Zennor 1st King of the Mountain

11.54 am – Rosewall Hill 2nd King of the Mountain / St Ives

12.02 pm – Carbis Bay

12.06 pm – Lelant

12.10 pm – Hayle 1st Sprint

12.19 pm – Gwithian

12.29 pm – Barripper

12.31 pm – Camborne

12.41 pm – Redruth

12.48 pm – Penhalvean

12.52 pm – Stithians

1.01 pm – Longdowns

1.04 pm – Mabe / Burnthouse

1.08 pm – Falmouth

1.14 pm – Swanpool Road

1.17 pm – Castle Drive, Falmouth

1.28 pm – Penryn 2nd Sprint

1.34 pm – Perranworthal

1.38 pm – Carnon Downs 3rd King of the Mountain

1.46 pm – Truro

1.53 pm – Shortlanesend

2.00 pm – Zelah

2.15 pm – Newquay

2.24 pm – Quintrell Downs

2.43 pm – St Stephen

2.53 pm – St Austell

3.00 pm – Bodelva Road

3.15 pm – Bugle

3.24 pm – Lanivet

3.30 pm – Bodmin – FINISH