British Cycling has announced they will organise a sportive ride on the route covered by the first stage of the 2007 Tour de France from London to Canterbury.

Full details of the route and how to enter will be revealed on February 15 but organisers hope to attract 5,000 riders from both the UK and Europe and plan a high-quality day of cycling, similar to the Etape du Tour ride held during the Tour de France.

The event will take place exactly one week before Le Tour de France on Sunday 1 July and cover the roads of the 117-mile stage. Organisers hope the ride will help promote cycling and show off the Kent countryside.

?This cyclo-sportive will be one of the highlights of the cycling summer,” Jonny Clay, British Cycling?s Events Manager claimed when the announcement of the event was made.

?The challenge of riding the same 117-mile route as the stars of the Tour de France has the potential to inspire cyclists across the country. Add to that the carnival atmosphere and the sheer size of the event and it looks like being a great day for cycling.?

The sportive will be owned by British Cycling and be incorporated into its ?Everyday Cycling? programme. Pennine Events (www.pennineevents.co.uk) will organise the event on behalf of British Cycling.

Full details of the route and its partners will be announced on Thursday 15 February.