Olympic time trial champion Annemiek van Vleuten has confirmed that the Women’s Tour will be on her programme in 2021.

The Movistar Team rider, who recently clinched the Ladies Tour of Norway, announced her end of season programme at the weekend that will see her return to the UK’s biggest professional women’s race for the first time since 2014.

Van Vleuten took the gold medal in the Tokyo individual time trial to go with silver from the road race before returning to Europe to win the one-day Donostia San Sebastian Klasikoa the following weekend and the four-stage Norwegian tour earlier this month.

Earlier this year when we announced our first ever individual time trial in Atherstone Annemiek van Vleuten has spoken of her excitement to see the Women’s Tour including its first-ever race of truth.

“This news makes me really happy! Time trialling is an important part of cycling – it is a Olympic discipline – but we don’t have many opportunities to ride them, so I’m really excited that the Women’s Tour has added one! This type of stage is good for me – but it’s also good for the future of cycling: younger athletes can learn so much by doing them.

“The Women’s Tour is such a great event – I still get goosebumps when I think about how many schoolchildren line the side of the roads. I hope that this is the case once again in October!”

The 2019 World road race champion has enjoyed another excellent season – her first in the colours of the Movistar Team – taking wins in the Ronde van Vlaanderen and Dwars door Vlaanderen single day events plus stage races in Spain and Norway.  Van Vleuten’s programme will see her defending her European title in September before the World Championships in Leueven and the first women’s Paris Roubaix ahead of arriving in the UK for the Women’s Tour from Monday 4 to Saturday 9 October.

As a double World and multiple Dutch time trial champion van Vleuten is sure to be among the favourites for the stage three individual time trial at the Women’s Tour, which is sure to playing a key role in deciding the race overall.