A tour, down under – now that’s an Aussie title!
The Tour Down Under, or TDU for short, is actually Australia’s premier cycling race. The tour is jam-packed with nine massive days of world class cycling, local events, kids’ activities and street parties plus a fancy gala dinner at Adelaide Convention Centre.
The very first TDU took place in 1999 and it’s now the biggest cycling race in the southern hemisphere. In 2008, the TDU joined the UCI WorldTour making it the first event to be added outside of cycling’s traditional European roots. Taking place from the 14th-22nd of January, it’s the first event on the international cycling calendar for the year.
There have been some big names on the course throughout the years including Tour de France winners; Oscar Pereiro, Andy Schleck, Alberto Contador and Carlos Sastre and of course our very own Cadel Evans. You may recognise some familiar Aussie faces on the track including, Simon Gerrans, Stuart O’Grady, Robbie McEwen, Richie Porte, and Allan Davis. This year the big names keep coming with world champion Peter Sagan joining the race. But this event isn’t just for the pros. For those just starting out, amateur cyclists can get in on the action by riding a part of the UCI WorldTour race route in the Breakaway Series.
The TDU brings excitement for riders, spectators and South Australian locals alike, but hit the brakes! This is way more than just a bike race.
Why does the event cover so much ground? Well, it’s an excellent way to show spectators why they should visit SA. The TDU contributes largely to the state’s tourism industry, generating an impressive $49.6m for the state’s economy in 2016 alone. Last year, 795,000 spectators lined the roads of SA with more than 39,000 visitors travelling from interstate and various countries around the globe to support the riders as they sprint and climb their way through the course.
The TDU is pretty much a state-wide party celebrating cycling, so I guess it’s convenient that SA is the wine capital of Australia! With the race taking riders through the city centre and out to the regional surrounds, all of the things that make SA beautiful are broadcasted to both national and global audiences.
For those who don’t want to miss a second, the tour covers all events on their live feed. Events and competitor categories are broken down into the following sections on the event calendar:
As proud partners of the TDU we are pretty excited to sponsor this year’s iiNet Sprint Jersey!
The iiNet Sprint Jersey is awarded to the leader of the sprint points tally at the end of each stage and the overall to the rider who led the cumulative sprint points tally. To get the points, riders need to be one of the first three riders to cross the line at the designated sprint locations along the route.
Be sure to follow iiNet on Instagram to catch this year’s speedy winners of the 2017 iiNet Sprint Jersey!