Home Cycling Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift: Launchpad for Girls’s Professional Biking?

Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift: Launchpad for Girls’s Professional Biking?

Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift: Launchpad for Girls’s Professional Biking?


In July 2014 I stood on the Champs-Élysées in Paris and watched the primary version of La Course by the Tour de France, a single stage race placed on by the Amaury Sport Group (ASO) that includes girls professionals. It was an thrilling time out, with the finale of the lads’s race to return later, and the very best feminine street racers on this planet had been decided to placed on a present. A girls’s Tour de France had existed in some type and underneath numerous names between 1955 and 2009 however had lacked constant financing, media help or, apparently, fan curiosity however stress on the ASO efficiently led the organizers to attempt once more. Protection of what was primarily a criterium race on the long-lasting Champs-Élysées (received by—shock!–Marianne Vos) was very optimistic and ASO was inspired sufficient to increase the challenge, with La Course races persevering with in several components of France. Whereas there was preliminary reward for the idea, criticism developed as La Course was derided as a mere afterthought in comparison with the lads’s race, with poor logistics and a restricted format of single day races reasonably than an actual multi-stage occasion. This was to vary in 2022 with the relaunch of the race in an expanded eight-stage model, now often called the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift, a partnership with the huge multiplayer biking program. As was the case of the primary version, the 2023 race started the day the lads’s Tour de France ended and in 2024 will see its Grand Départ start exterior of France, within the Netherlands.

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Lorena Wiebes (SD Worx) in the beginning of stage 1 in Clermont-Ferrand

The 2022 race was seen as a substantial success, with 144 riders representing 25 nationalities and on 24 groups, and offering some dramatic racing. Annemiek van Vleuten received the Common Classification by 4 minutes, and the Inexperienced Jersey for the Factors Classification was received by—shock!–the evergreen Marianne Vos. The concept of a girls’s Tour de France has confronted many obstacles over time however one unvarying notion was that there was simply no market to justify the expense of placing on such a race. Nielsen Sports activities, working with Zwift, not too long ago revealed a report on the viewer demographics and social impression of the 2022 race and it makes for attention-grabbing studying.

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Marianne Vos (Jumbo-Visma) and Lotte Kopecky (SD Worx) on the end of stage 3 in Montignac-Lascaux

The manager abstract signifies that the cumulative stay viewers for the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift was 23.2 million, with the common stay viewers per stage being 2.9 million. The race’s impression on social media was appreciable, with an enormous development in social posts associated to the Prime 5 girls’s races rising by over 300% in 2022 in comparison with 2021 because of the introduction of the TdFFaZ. Whereas the variety of followers of prime feminine riders stays smaller than that of their male counterparts, it’s rising at a a lot sooner price. Moreover, girls’s biking attracts a bigger viewers than one would count on, placing it 4th among the many most adopted girls’s sports activities, and that viewers, not like the closely male-oriented viewers for sports activities basically, is nearer in gender equality. And apparently 73% of ladies’s biking followers are fascinated with taking part in sports activities and health actions, a a lot increased proportion than the 44% consultant of the final inhabitants.

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Yara Kastelijn (Fenix-Deceuninck) going solo on stage 4 to Rodez

After seemingly years within the wilderness, it appears to be like like girls’s professional biking has lastly come of age from that July day in Paris in 2014, with not solely a Tour de France but additionally girls’s editions of among the Monuments too. Actual stars are rising (okay, Marianne Vos was at all times there!) and fan help is just not the unicorn it was as soon as considered by doubters. Even grumpy previous Partick Lefevre’s Soudal-Fast-Step workforce has a counterpart on the distaff facet and there may be undoubtedly extra to return.

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Lotte Kopecky in yellow on stage 3 of the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift 2023

For an govt abstract Nielsen Sports activities report, ready in enticing infographics, test it out right here:

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Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift 2023 route map

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