A study commissioned by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) and conducted by EY – found that the UCI World Championships, in road, truck, mountain bike and Gran Fondo – generated an additional 60 million euros in economic activity for the local economies of the host cities and regions.

In 2018, the UCI World Championships and the rounds of the UCI World Cups in cycling’s various disciplines, attracted some 10,000 athletes from 98 countries and were held in 24 countries on five continents.

Held in Innsbruck-Tyrol (AUT), the 2018 UCI Road World Champions were a case in point. For instance, the event contributed around 40 million euros to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Innsbruck and the Tyrol region, the equivalent to 720 newly created jobs (in a year).

The study also found that the hotel industry benefited more than any other from spending by foreign visitors, who spent an average of 74 euros per night, as part of an average daily spend of 114 euros. As well, the capital of Tyrol enjoyed increased visibility thanks to a total TV audience of 250 million viewers in 100 countries, 53 of them in Europe.

Other UCI events – the 2018 UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Apeldoorn, the 2018 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships in Lenzerheide and the 2018 UCI Gran Fondo World Championships in Varese – contributed 2.3 millions euros, 11.5 millions euros and 4.4 millions euros respectively to the GDP of the host cities and regions.

David Lappartient, president at the UCI, said: “2018 was a year of spectacular and successful competitions, not least the UCI Road World Championships in Innsbruck-Tyrol and the Mountain Bike World Championships in Lenzerheide.

“I am delighted that the study conducted by EY in collaboration with the UCI has confirmed the extremely positive direct and indirect economic impact our events generate during and after competition. Our World Cups and our World Championships provide athletes with a magnificent stage on which to compete and are also strong drivers of economic development, in terms of cycling and tourism, in the regions that host them.”

Peter Arnold, a partner in the economic advisory team at EY UK, commented: “Cycling events have the potential to generate significant economic benefits to host regions, as illustrated by the range of examples showcased within this report.

“The broad appeal of these events and their ability to engage both local and international audiences can make them a great platform for host regions. By building connections with visitors and spectators, and by aligning these events with local economic and social policy goals, they can have a wide and enduring impact on a local area.”