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Monthly Archives: July 2009


One of the most prestigious, long-standing bicycle races and sports events in general- is “Le Tour de France”. The Tour is the third largest sporting event around the globe, following the Olympic Games and the FIFA World Cup.

The 95 year old race event creates  massive interest from the international media, as it is broadcast on TV in 180 countries. The race brings in representatives from 75 radio stations in 25 countries and over 450 newspapers, photographers and media from 26 countries in total.

The Tour involves shuttling, accommodating and feeding over 4,500 people each and every day for the full 23 days (21 days of racing plus two rest days) A total of 2,400 vehicles will be following the race, including race director with support, team vehicles, medical and general support.  Then there is the matter of the huge, dedicated, fanatical crowds that line the routes for three solid weeks.

The entire budget for the Le Tour is estimated at nearly 100 million euros, or $140 million U.S. dollars-  of which, approximately 50% derived from the broadcast television rights, 40% from title and presenting sponsors and the remainder from participant fees paid by each town where the stages start and finish.

The 2009 edition of the Tour will see the competing cyclists span about 2,200 miles, visit 34 towns, pass through 560 municipalities and make stops in a total of six countries- Monaco, France, Andorra, Spain, Switzerland and Italy.

Each and every town in every country will feel the effects of the Tour from spectators, media and team personnel in the way of traffic jams, long lines, and crowded streets- but most importantly; money spent.

The event organizer- the ASO, or Amaury Sport Organisation owns the newspapers and magazine publications l’Equipe, France Football, l’Equipe Magazine, Vélo Magazine, Le Parisien and Aujourd’hui in France.

Created in September 1992, the ASO  is a specialized organization of sporting events, and in addition to the Tour de France, they put on the famous Dakar Rally and the Paris Marathon.

Aiding the ASO in France will be the French police and emergency services, who will direct and assist all the French municipalities in dealing with needed highway repairs, road signs, safety barriers and the planting of yellow flowers in all of the prevailing open spaces.

The cost of these operations is approximately three and a half million euros- with technical costs accounting for over two million euros and the rest spent on miscellaneous items including, communications and local ancillary supporting events.

On the financial side, along with the promotion of tourism in each city and town there will be a substantial increase in the traffic and flow of people in and out of restaurants, hotels and merchant shops. The subsequent impact of the large increase in traffic will spur positive economic upshots for all commercial merchants involved.

A major retailer, the Champion supermarket chain, which is the presenting sponsor of the “Polka Dot Jersey” or “King of the Mountains” for the best climber, will have 21 vehicles and countless personnel in the Tour’s caravan.

For the 2009 edtion of Le Tour, Champions managers have planned a very aggresive, dedicated marketing and promotions campaign for their 1,000 stores in France, Belgium, Spain, Poland, Greece, Turkey and Argentina.

With Spain being one of this year’s major themes for the supermarket, the chain’s plan is to have the in-store hostesses wearing outfits designed by one of the country’s most famous fashion designers all in hopes of attracting more female customers.

It is estimated that there will be approximately 15,000,000 spectators over the 21 days, spending an average of three euros per day- for a whopping total of 45,000,000 million euros or $63,000,000 million U.S. dollars.

The result will be a significant economic impact for all of the participating countries, cities, towns and boroughs. It is no wonder that over 200 towns in France alone apply to the ASO every year for a spot on the famed Le Tour route.

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