The Tour de France, one of the most popular cycling competitions in the world, will kick off next Saturday, July 1. It is considered one of the largest sporting events on the planet, and according to statistics from mediametryattracting around 150 million viewers across Europe in 2022. But how popular is cycling in each country?
Data from Statista Consumer Insights shows that the Dutch not only cycle more often in their daily lives, but also have a strong interest in competitive cycling. About 28% of sports fans surveyed in the country stated that they actively follow cycling competitions, championships or teams. There are similar numbers of cycling fans in the three countries of the “Grand Tours” – the Tour de France, the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España – since 28% of the French and Spanish participants, and 26% of the Italians declare themselves fans of the famous stage races. The UK lags somewhat behind, with only 14% of British sports fans claiming to pursue professional careers.
Outside Europe, India stands out, with just over two in ten sports fans saying they follow professional cycling. In the Americas, Brazil (15%) and Mexico (10%) have higher proportions of cycling enthusiasts than the United States (9%) among sports enthusiasts. The fact that two-wheeled racing is not currently very popular in this country may be in part due to doping scandals like the one that culminated in former American professional cyclist Lance Armstrong’s seven-year reign at the Tour de France. Follow-up of two-wheelers is even rarer in Japan (5%).