The start for next year’s Cape Town Cycle Tour will move from its traditional position on Hertzog Boulevard to the historic Grand Parade. “Our participants’ safety will always come first,” says David Bellairs, a director of the Cape Town Cycle Tour Trust. “After the issues we had with wind at this year’s start, we immediately reviewed and re-assessed our options for next year.“This year was a year of incredible learnings. We believe now – as we did then – that the right decision was made on the day. Nothing could have prepared the team for the challenges thrown at us in the lead up to this year’s Cape Town Cycle Tour and nobody was more disappointed at the cancellation than the team who had spent the entire year preparing for the 40th Cape Town Cycle Tour.”He says, while they realise the wind blows everywhere in the city, they want to avoid “the sort of wind vortices created by the tunnels at the base of the Civic Centre, these being exacerbated by the extraordinarily strong winds prevailing on the morning of this year’s event”.“We are very grateful for the upgrades and rejuvenation that the City of Cape Town has already undertaken, and has planned for the Grand Parade. The City effectively enticed us back to our roots: In 1978, 525 cyclists set off from the roads outside the castle on the first ever cycle tour (then called the Argus Tour),” says Bellairs. “While the start of the race changes next year, we look forward to welcoming organisers and cyclists to an exciting event. Our support of the Cape Town Cycle Tour forms part of our strategy to attract even more events to the city.“The City remains committed to doing all we can to promote cycling and to ensure a safe environment for cyclists on our roads,” says JP Smith, Mayco member for safety and security, and social services. Bellairs says the Grand Parade start will broaden the scope for expansion and improving the overall experience for participants, suggesting that they will add a breakfast hospitality zone and more services.Riders will gather on Grand Parade and line up in Castle Street alongside the Castle of Good Hope and will follow the usual route around the peninsula to the finish on 11 March 2018.Changes are also in the pipeline for the race village in Green Point. EntriesBellairs confirms that every rider who entered and registered for this year’s race by collecting their number and race pack at the expo will have preferential entry before general entries open. Entry fees for these riders will remain fixed at this year’s rates. General and international entry applications will open on 20 September.For more information visit www.capetowncycletour.com.