IF just a fraction of the support shown for the Tour de France in Yorkshire is replicated when the Tour of Britain arrives in Worcester, it is certain to be a memorable occasion.

An incredible 2.5 million people lined the route for the first two stages of the world’s most famous cycling race in the county last weekend, leading race director Christian Prudhomme to label it as the “grandest Grand Depart” in the event’s history.

Yorkshire pretty much ground to a halt as everyone, both cycling fans and general onlookers, scrambled for a view.

It might not have been everyone’s cup of tea but it certainly captured the imagination of the majority for a weekend.

Cycling is rapidly increasing in popularity in the UK, thanks in no small part to the success of Sir Bradley Wiggins et al at the London Olympics.

Although Briton Chris Froome is now out of the Tour through injury, his status as defending champion would also have been a factor in bringing out the crowds.

Worcester will be hoping to harness such enthusiasm on September 10 when stage four of the Tour of Britain begins in the city.

Froome should again be among the riders who will start the stage at the Hive before embarking on the 182km trek to Bristol via Malvern, Upton-upon-Severn, Pershore, Evesham and Broadway.

The Tour de France it might not be, but it is still a prestigious event on the cycling calendar.

This is a real opportunity for people in the city, young and old, to come out in force to witness some of the best cyclists around in action at close quarters.

No doubt there will be those who will moan about the inevitable road closures and a few hours of disruption to their daily routine along the route.

But, as Yorkshire has shown, that should pale into insignificance when compared to creating a moment in history.