ASO says British Tour success is good for business
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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

ASO says British Tour success is good for business

by Shane Stokes at 5:50 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France
 
Amaury welcomes Wiggins’ victory

Tour de FranceTour de France owners ASO have said that Bradley Wiggins’ Tour de France success is a big boost to the race, with the popularity of the sport amongst English speakers seen as a positive for business.

Jean-Etienne Amaury, who is the president of the Amaury Sport Organisation, is pleased with the outcome of the race, which saw British riders Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome (both Team Sky) finish ahead of Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas-Cannondale).

“We’re very happy that the English are doing well,” he stated, according to Bloomberg. “The race is getting more and more popular in the English-speaking world.

“Many more American, Australians and English have started coming to the Tour the last five to ten years.” He added that many English-speaking people are riding to the two editions of L’Etape du Tour held each year.

Announced last Autumn, the layout of the 2012 route was seen as ideal for two riders: defending champion Cadel Evans (BMC Racing Team), whose success boosted the interest of the Australian market, and for Wiggins, who finished fourth in 2009 and was determined to win the race as part of the multi-million pound Sky Procycling team.

Heavy on time trials, it featured over 100 solo kilometres against the clock. In addition, there were just three summit finishes, thus tipping the balance away from specialist climbers such as the Schleck brothers Andy and Frank, plus 2007 and 2009 winner Alberto Contador.

Ultimately, none of the three were a factor anyway: the latter ultimately did not take part due to a doping ban, while 2010 winner Andy Schleck missed the race due to a pelvis fracture. His brother Frank dropped out from the Tour after testing positive for a banned diuretic.

Along with Nibali, the Sky duo o Wiggins and Froome ended up being the strongest climbers in the 2012 lineup.

Cycling is booming in Britain and Wiggins’ success plus the hosting of the London Olympics in the country should further boost the amount of people practicing the sport, supporting the riders and reading about cycling in the press.

Next year’s Tour is rumoured to be more mountainous, although the route won’t be officially announced for several months.

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