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Tower tour of Britain pedals off to a challenge start

PUBLISHED: 21:30 08 September 2008 | UPDATED: 13:36 05 October 2010

Tour of Britain as it pass by Tower Bridge, East London, UK September 7, 2008

Tour of Britain as it pass by Tower Bridge, East London, UK September 7, 2008

Carmen valino

THE WORLD’S top cyclists zoomed through the streets of London for the first day of the week-long Tour of Britain which took in all the sites. Not that the 96 riders had time to admire the tourist attractions—they zoomed off from Victoria Embankment in the shadow of Big Ben and were making a tight u-turn past the Tower of London just minutes later

THE WORLD’S top cyclists shot through the streets of London for the first day of the week-long Tour of Britain which took in all the sites.

Not that the 96 riders had time to admire the tourist attractions—they zoomed off from Victoria Embankment in the shadow of Big Ben up to Trafalgar Square and were then making a tight u-turn past the Tower of London (pictured) just minutes later.

But what they missed the first time they were able to catch again as the they circled the City and West End 10 times over, in 10 laps, to complete the six-mile circuit.

The champion race finishes in Liverpool on Sunday (September 14).

Italian cyclist Alessandro Petacchi took first place in the London leg of the grand tour, with Rob Hayles waving the Union Jack for Britain in second place and Sweden’s Magnus Backstedt taking third place.

Meanwhile Londoners at Tower Hill could get advice about cycling in the city and maintaining their bikes and sample goodies from pedal powered stalls as the racers whizzed by.

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