The Biggest Cycling Events in the World

We can all take inspiration from the biggest and most prestigious tours and events that our wonderful sport has to offer.

These are the kinds of world-renowned cycling events that get their fair share of Vegas bets and media attention. We can always enjoy the spectacle and excitement that these grueling cycling events have to offer.

Milan-San Remo

One of the five classic one-day cycling events, known as the Monuments, the Milan-San Remo is the longest of the lot and was first held way back in 1907. As the name suggests, it starts in Milan and spans 185.2 miles to San Remo in northwest Italy. It is considered something of a sprinters’ race due to the mainly flat course.

Usually held on the third Saturday of March, this race is a real test of endurance so early on in the professional season. The current champion is Slovenian Matej Mohoric. But the rider with the most titles in the race’s history is the legendary Belgian cyclist Eddie Merckx, who triumphed an unrivaled seven times.

Olympic Games

As much as cycling fans love the Monuments and the Grand Tours, the Olympics is still one of the most prestigious titles to win – with the gold medal that comes along with that, of course. The makeup of the cycling events has changed over the years but there has always been some kind of excitement for cyclists to follow.

The more traditional events are the road race and the individual time trial, which are as straightforward as they sound. There is also a range of track events, as well as mountain biking and BMX events that have been introduced to great popularity at recent Olympiads.

Vuelta a Espana

Now we move on to the first of the Grand Tours on our list. First held in 1935 after the success of both the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de France, the Vuelta e Espana is the final Grand Tour to take place every year. Originally held in the spring, it is now scheduled around the end of August.

The temperatures in Spain at that time of year can be brutal and that, along with some of the steep hill climbs, can really affect the performances of even some of the best riders in the world. The leader gets to don the red jersey and, unsurprisingly, Spanish cyclists have proved to be the best over the years.

The Giro d'Italia always brings out the crowds

The Giro d’Italia always brings out the crowds

Giro d’Italia

This is the first Grand Tour of the year, taking place in Italy in May. In some regions that can mean a very rainy (or even snowy) race – much different from the high temperatures of the Vuelta a Espana, The winners’ jersey at the Giro d’Italia is the famous pink outfit.

This multi-stage event first took place in 1909 to help boost the sales of a national newspaper. But it has become one of the jewels of professional cycling now and many more tune in for the stunning scenery that backdrops the stages. Although Italians have dominated the event, the current champion is Australian Jai Hindley.

Tour de France

Although all three of the Grand Tours are equally classic in the eyes of cycling fans, it is the Tour de France that has transcended the sport as an annual spectacle. It is the most famous race in the world and is the one that all young cyclists grow up dreaming of competing in.

First staged in 1903, the Tour de France has only ever stopped for the two World Wars and consists of 21 stages, ranging from mountain climbs to time trials. There have been a number of starts (or Grande Depart) outside of France, but the tour always finishes in spectacular fashion, with the riders racing around the Arc du Triomphe on the Champs-Elysees.

Top Photo – The Tour de France is the biggest cycling event in the world


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