Le Tour Yorkshire leaves lasting impression

Le Tour Yorkshire leaves lasting impression

Published at 4:01pm 7th July 2014. (Updated at 4:05pm 7th July 2014)

Yorkshire has said "au revoir" to what is being described as the greatest ever Tour de France Grand Départ.

Millions of people lined the routes of the first two stages, creating unprecedented scenes which left the riders, teams and organisers astounded.

Christian Prudhomme, director of the Tour de France, said: "I work for the Tour, but I also love the Tour, and I have seen that the people of Yorkshire love the Tour too. I can see the Tour in their hearts, and in their eyes.

"For that, I say thank you to Welcome to Yorkshire, and to everyone in Yorkshire who has made this Grand Départ so very, very special.

"Bernard Hinault said to me, it is the first time in 40 years on a bike that he has seen crowds like we saw this weekend. What you did was good for Yorkshire, for sure, but what you did was also good for the Tour. When you said you would deliver the grandest Grand Départ it was the truth, you have raised the bar for all future hosts of the Tour de France."

Gary Verity, Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, added: "When we first bid for the Grand Départ of the Tour de France, I promised Christian Prudhomme that we would deliver the grandest Grand Départ the Tour has ever seen. It gives me immense pride to say that we made good on that promise, and the success of this spectacular event will welcome an incredible new chapter in the history of Yorkshire.

"Millions of people both right here at the roadside and in homes all over the world have seen the magnificence of Yorkshire, and our beautiful county has done itself proud once again."

The economic impact of hosting the world's greatest cycling race is thought to be worth around £100 million to Yorkshire's economy.

Mr Verity added: "We might have to revise those economic impact figures after the scenes we have witnessed this weekend.

"Undoubtedly, it will give a huge boost to the Yorkshire economy, but it's the images of Yorkshire people, Yorkshire pride and Yorkshire's outstanding landscapes beamed around the world which have been simply priceless for the county."