London

RideLondon attracts thousands of cyclists to the streets

RideLondon event Image copyright TfL
Image caption Many families are enjoying riding through the traffic-free roads in the capital

Thousands of people have been cycling through London for an event featuring eight miles of traffic-free streets.

The circuit takes in the Strand, Buckingham Palace, St Paul's Cathedral, Victoria Embankment and the new East-West Cycle Superhighway.

Amateur riders in the Prudential RideLondon event are alongside stunt riders performing at a separate event.

An 5.5km (3.4 miles) elite women's race through central London was won by Kirsten Wild, of the Netherlands.

The 33-year-old Dutch rider won the women's Tour de Yorkshire, in April.

Image copyright Prudential RideLondon
Image caption The elite women's race covered a 3.4 mile circuit around central London

Up to 150 top professional cyclists will take part in the men's race - the Surrey Classic - on Sunday, including Tour de France champion Chris Froome.

Image copyright Prudential RideLondon
Image caption Some rode vintage bikes while others used cycle-hire bikes
Image copyright Prudential RideLondon
Image caption Even those too young to ride were towed along

The three-day event began on Friday at the Lee Valley VeloPark in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park with a handcycling race and under-14 and under-16 challenges for budding cyclists.

Image copyright TfL
Image caption The eight-mile route takes in landmarks like Buckingham Palace and the City of London
Image copyright TfL
Image caption The FreeCycle event is for amateurs

Ahead of the event London Mayor Sadiq Khan said he would take part and challenged Froome, who last weekend became the first Briton to win Le Tour three times, to take part.

"I've challenged him to a race," said the mayor.

"If he's got any sense he'll say no to save my pride, but it's really important, people being confident about riding bikes, not just those middle aged men in lycra like me but also people who are occasional riders."

Image copyright Prudential RideLondon
Image caption Family selfie
Image copyright Prudential RideLondon
Image caption A budding professional
Image copyright @scottworld
Image caption Some riders wore costumes and rode adapted bicycles
Image copyright Prudential RideLondon
Image caption Batman also took to his bike
Image copyright Prudential RideLondon
Image caption Others came with fluffy friends
Image copyright Prudential RideLondon
Image caption And pets

Professional stunt bike riders displayed their skills at an event at the Green Park.

Stunt cyclist Andrei Burton broke three world records within 15 minutes, organisers said.

Image copyright Prudential RideLondon
Image caption Stunt cyclist Andrei Burton broke three Guinness World Records

Burton side-hopped 157.5cm up to a platform, vertically dropped 3.34m onto a tiny target and popped his back wheel left-to-right 75 times over a wooden bar.

After being handed his new Guinness World Record certificate, Burton said: "Three world records before breakfast - how good is that?

"It feels brilliant though."

Several roads have been closed to traffic in central London and the City of London over the weekend for the event with closures in place from 05:00 BST to 18:00 BST, Transport for London said.

Image copyright Prudential RideLondon
Image caption Stunt bikers displayed their skills
Image copyright Prudential RideLondon
Image caption Various events were held at special areas along the route

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