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London passes on Grand Départ for the 2017 Tour de France

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London calling: The Tour hits London and see Marcel Kittel come out on top

London calling: The Tour hits London and see Marcel Kittel come out on top
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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There will be plenty of Union Jacks flying roadside when the Tour de France starts in 2014 with three stages in Great Britain

There will be plenty of Union Jacks flying roadside when the Tour de France starts in 2014 with three stages in Great Britain
(Image credit: Pete Goding/Godingimages.com)
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It was a big day out in Yorkshire for the race today

It was a big day out in Yorkshire for the race today
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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A thumbs up from Bradley Wiggins (Great Britain) after winning the gold medal

A thumbs up from Bradley Wiggins (Great Britain) after winning the gold medal
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Chris Froome kisses his 2015 Tour de France trophy

Chris Froome kisses his 2015 Tour de France trophy
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Edvald Boasson Hagen competes in downtown London during the final stage of the Tour of Britain.

Edvald Boasson Hagen competes in downtown London during the final stage of the Tour of Britain.

Following two successful visits by the world’s biggest race, London has chosen to pass on an chance to host the Grand Départ of the 2017 Tour de France.

The British capital city had initially beaten several other European cities to host the 2017 Grand Départ but changed their minds due to the cost. The news comes after a February financial report was recently leaked on the inaugural Welcome to Yorkshire bike event. The report included details regarding over-budget costs for the 2014 Yorkshire Tour de France Grand Départ. 

"To ensure value for money we must make difficult choices," the managing director of surface transport at Transport for London (TfL), Leon Daniels, told BBC Sport. "We have always said that the return of the Tour was subject to funding."

Daniels did not mention if the Yorkshire financial report had any impact on their decision.

In 2014 Yorkshire hosted the Grand Départ, a successful event with 3.5 million spectators enjoying the three days of racing before the Tour headed to France via London. Following the success of the event, race organisers ASO vowed to return to London as soon as possible after it boosted the local economy by an estimated £100 million according to the organisers.  

Prior to 2014, Great Britain had hosted the Grand Départ in 2007 in London. TfL provided £6 million of the £27 million budget. Considering the future costs and potential future national budget cuts for transportation, the city has now decided to bypass the opportunity for 2017.

ASO has not publicly responded nor have they said which city may now be the frontrunner in spite of several reports suggesting Germany may be one. Germany renewed a broadcasting agreement this summer with ASO after a three-year hiatus of skipping the Tour citing doping scandals and poor ratings. The country had a successful Tour with national stars Andre Greipel winning several stages, and Tony Martin winning a stage besides spending a couple of days in yellow before crashing out of the race. 

The 2016 Grand Départ will be in France in the Normandy region of La Manche.