Tendring is set to turn orange next month for the inaugural Friends Life Women’s Tour cycling event. Residents are being asked to get behind British rider Emma Trott and support her Dutch Boels Dolmans team during Stages Three and Five as they pass through parts of the District.

Emma, the older sister of Olympic Gold Medallist Laura Trott, is stepping up her training and hopes she and her team will make a big impact on the race.

The 24-year-old was in Clacton last month to help launch the two stages which pass through Tendring; Stage Three finishes in Clacton on Friday 9 May and Stage Five starts off from Harwich on Sunday 11 May.

She made an impression on everyone she met that day – especially students from Clacton Coastal Academy – who have pledged to get behind her and her teammates.

The Netherlands has 12 provinces and 3 overseas territories and the aim is to turn Tendring into the unofficial 13th province for those few days!

Mark Platt, Tendring District Council’s (TDC) Cabinet Member for Tourism, Events and Leisure Services, said it is not being unpatriotic as Boels Dolmans, whose colours are orange and black, have two Brits in their ranks.

“As well as Emma, they boast British Champion Lizzie Armitstead so even though it’s a Dutch team they have home riders,” he said.

“Tendring has strong links with the Netherlands through Harwich and it would be great to see people support the team over those two days and turn Tendring orange.”

British Champion Armitstead won't be wearing orange however, as she will be in the red, white and blue national champions kit (pictured below), a change from the UCI World Cup leader's jersey she has been wearing in the World Cup events, most recently on Wednesday when she came second at the classic Fleche Wallonne single-day event.

Cllr Platt said he is also hoping the visitors from The Netherlands will be coming over on the ferries to watch the Women’s Tour and plenty of orange around the District will help make them feel welcome and at home.

“Who knows it could even lead to more visitors coming over to the District in the future once they have been here for the race,” he added.

“Stena Line has created a 10 per cent offer for spectators coming across to Harwich for the tour and we hope that will have an impact.”

Cllr Platt said that Emma was such a bubbly character and so enthusiastic. Everyone who spoke to her was enthused about the event next month and she is a great ambassador for her sport.

Tracey Hemming, Principal at Clacton Coastal Academy said that the students who turned up to the launch really enjoyed chatting with Emma and banners supporting her and Boels Dolmans are already being made in preparation for the event.

“She is sure of a warm welcome when she comes through Clacton and passes by the end of the road and we will be out there cheering her on,” she added.

Cllr Platt said he would like to see other schools, groups and spectators getting involved.

“The aim is to get people to wear something orange along the route and let them know we are behind them all the way,” he added.

In all there will be 16 of the world’s top professional women’s teams racing next month, including three from the Netherlands.  In addition to Boels Dolmans, the Rabo Liv team of World & Olympic Champion Marianne Vos are Dutch, while a Netherlands national team will also be wearing orange with a strong six rider line-up.

Visitors from the continent can take advantage of a 10% discount from Stena Line for spectators by clicking here.

You can find out more about the Stage Three Finish in Clacton here and the Stage Five Start in Harwich here.