A Summer of Sport in Leeds
1 July 2016
Attend Leading Sports Events During a Four-Star Stay at 42 The Calls
Home to the starting line of 2014’s Tour de France, and boasting the legendary Headingley Stadium, Elland Road football stadium and many more outstanding sports venues, it’s easy to see why Leeds is renowned for its world-class sporting events. The Yorkshire Country Cricket Club, Leeds Rhinos and Yorkshire Carnegie are all based in the Headingley sports complex, while, alongside attracting some of the biggest names in the entertainment industry, the 13,000 capacity First Direct Arena has hosted the likes of the Grand Depart, Sports Personality of the Year and Premier League Darts. This summer, Leeds can offer a diverse line-up, offering the chance to both watch and take part in some of the season’s biggest sporting events.
Boxing & Europe’s Strongest Man
Located a 15 minute stroll from 42 The Calls, First Direct Arena will be hosting two of the summer’s most highly anticipated events. The 9th of July will see some of the world’s strongest men gather to flex their muscles in Europe’s Strongest Man competition. The show will begin with the World Deadlift Championships before seeing the likes of the 30 stone ‘Thor’ and Hathor Bjornssson, who is known for his role as ‘The Mountain’ in TV series Game of Thrones, run while dragging cars behind them and attempt to lift the spherical Atlas Stones.
The 30th of July will see Josh Warrington headline ‘A Night of Championship Boxing’ in his hometown. Currently ranked 7th in the world, Leeds-born Warrington is on his way to reaching the world title and this one-off event will offer the chance to see him in action against Ireland’s Patrick Hyland. Meanwhile, other competitors defending or battling it out for titles will include Hudderfield’s Tyrone Nurse, Hull’s Tommy Coyle and Olympic gold medal winner Luke Campbell MBE, Birmingham’s Gamal Yafai and Barnsley’s Josh Wale.
Headingley Stadium is home to both the rugby league club Leeds Rhinos and rugby union club Yorkshire Carnegie. Leeds Rhinos was one of the 22 clubs that formed the Rugby Football League back in 1895 and the winners of the First Utility Super League last year. The team have two home fixtures left to play in the current season; the first will be on the 3rd of July vs. Widnes Vikings, while the second will be their penultimate game of the season, playing against Wigan Warriors on the 15th.
Meanwhile, Yorkshire Carnegie was founded in 1992 under the name of Leeds RUFC, following the merger of local teams Roundhay and Headingley. The team compete in the Rugby Football Union Championship and finished in third place for the 2015/2016 season after the Doncaster Knights and Bristol Rugby. The new season is set to start in September, however there may be a few friendlies against national and international teams to catch during August - find details of the latest fixtures here.
Those hoping for a change of pace may find solace watching a match at Headingley Cricket Ground. Home to The Yorkshire Country Cricket Club and having hosted 73 Tests to date, this 17,000 capacity venue is set to offer a variety of matches over the summer months, including the Royal London One Day Series. This event will see England playing Pakistan on Thursday the 1st of September, while the Royal London One Day Cup will see the Yorkshire Vikings take on Warwickshire on the 1st of August.
Women’s team, the Yorkshire Diamonds, will be taking on the likes of Loughborough Lightning on the 30th of July, followed by Western Storm on the 14th of August. While the 1st XI will be competing in both the Specsavers County Championship and the T20 Blast over the coming months, against teams such as the Birmingham Bears, Durham Jets and Northamptonshire Steelbacks. Whether you’re a cricket fan or simply curious, the club is regarded as one of the greatest in the world and the county boasts the most trophies won in the history of the game…ensuring that an unforgettable day out will await at Headingley.
Those inspired by the Tour de France and Tour de Yorkshire can take part in a variety of outstanding bike rides around Leeds and beyond this summer. Sky Ride Leeds will offer the chance to join thousands on a traffic-free 6.5km route on Sunday the 17th of July. Starting at the Headrow, just a 10 minute walk from 42 The Calls, this event will be suitable for all ages and abilities, with bike hire available from a specially designated gazebo on Great George Street. Alongside the chance to see more of Leeds on two wheels, there’ll also be free attractions such as cycling themed game shows and a photo booth to capture the occasion.
Sky Ride Leeds will also be offering a variety of social and guided rides, with three ability levels available for the latter. Take the chance to explore the city including its industrial history on the ‘Leeds Heritage Canal Trail – Milling, Sports & Knights’ on the 24th of July. This seven mile route will start at Thwaite Mills before gliding past the likes of the Royal Armouries. Alternatively, there’ll also be the fourth edition of the Leeds 100 Mile Bike Ride on the 18th of September, which will be raising money for Leeds Children’s Hospital. With chip-timing and web results included, this event will be ideal for those wanting to track their performance…as well as taking in the views starting from Roundhay Park.
After the highs and lows of the Euros, football fans can celebrate the start of the new season by catching a game or two at Elland Road during a stay in Leeds. Currently in the Sky Bet Championship League, Leeds United FC will begin their climb to the top (finger’s crossed) on the 7th of August away against QPR. Their first home match will be on the 13th against Birmingham, followed by Fulham on the 16th of August. Meanwhile, those visiting the city in July can look forward to a pre-season friendly between the club and local team Guiseley A.F.C. This David vs. Goliath match will be played on the 22nd at the 3,000 capacity Nethermoor Park and promises an electric atmosphere, especially from the National League team’s fans.
With such a diverse range of events on offer, Leeds is the ideal city break destination for sports fans this summer.
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