Island tour

The return of the Tour of Britain to the Isle of Wight is not excluded

Pretty much one thing could have seen the cancellation of the much-hyped Tour of Britain coming to the Isle of Wight on Sunday – and it happened – the sad passing of Her Majesty The Queen.

Although a major disappointment for the island and not reaping the many benefits it would have brought – tourism and sporting kudos in particular – the queen’s death has put everything into perspective.

However, a return of the Tour of Britain to the island has not been ruled out by its organizers – but any hope of encouragement and confirmation seems remote at the moment.

Nick Bull of the Tour of Britain was asked if the island was once again considered a venue for the popular multi-stage event.

He said: “We would definitely like to do it, but there are a lot of moving parts in all of this. We stay in contact with our stakeholders on the Isle of Wight.

“In the midst of all the uncertainty since the tragic events of last week, there are a lot of things to sort out.”

When asked if the island was part of future planning for the Tour of Britain, or being considered as a stage location, Nick kept his maps quite firmly to his chest.

He added: “It is far too early to tell at this stage. No timetable has been set and there are no guarantees.

Much of the island’s sport was suspended last weekend, including local football and Wessex League programmes, as a mark of respect.

There is, however, a full return to football tomorrow (Saturday), ahead of the Queen’s funeral on Monday.

And fans of Southampton, Portsmouth and other league teams, except those affected by police trouble in London, can leave knowing their matches are on.

East Cowes’ GKN Charity Sportive cycling event was canceled last Saturday, which was due to be postponed until spring next year, while the popular annual Brambles cricket match, which was due to be played at Brambles Bank, Cowes, on Monday , has been postponed until, provisionally, Sunday 9 October.

As an alternative mark of respect for the Queen, certain sporting events took place.

The Isle of Wight Fell series got a head start from Ventnor seafront last weekend, but with much lower numbers of entries.

The Medina IOW Parkrun went on as usual at Seaclose Park, Newport on Saturday morning.

In the afternoon, Sandown and Shanklin RFC kicked off their Counties 2 Hampshire season with a home game against New Milton – preceded by a period of silence from the Queen.