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The 2011 Santos Tour Down Under largest in event's history

By:
Jane Aubrey
Published:
March 22, 2011, 3:04 GMT,
Updated:
March 22, 2011, 4:41 GMT
Edition:
First Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Race:
Santos Tour Down Under
The Santos Tour Down Under peloton in action during stage 1.

The Santos Tour Down Under peloton in action during stage 1.

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Over 780,000 spectators watched Australia's WorldTour race

A best-ever field had aided the Santos Tour Down Under to its largest crowd in the event's 13 year history while injecting more than $43 million into the South Australian economy.

In perhaps one of the most exciting finishes to the event in recent years, Cameron Meyer (Garmin-Cervelo) claimed overall victory for the opening event of the WorldTour on the final stage, by just two seconds from Matt Goss.

The Tour's line-up boasted a class field of sprinters which included Mark Cavendish (HTC-Highroad), André Greipel (Omega Pharma-Lotto) and Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Cevelo) and was also the final race for seven-time Tour de France winner, Lance Armstrong (RadioShack).

Crowd figures for the six-stage event were up from 770,500 in 2010 to 782,393 spectators while $1,169 was spent by each event specific visitor from interstate and overseas compared to $1,047 in 2010.

The event also attracted $154.3 million of media coverage and 284 hours of television broadcast

"The Santos Tour Down Under has enjoyed massive growth since it received UCI WorldTour status in September 2007, more than doubling in every key indicator, including economic benefit, visitor and spectator numbers and media coverage," South Australian Premier, Mike Rann said.

Meanwhile, Škoda, the Santos Tour Down Under official vehicle supplier, has signed a new three year partnership with the event. Their sponsorship with the Santos Tour Down Under, which started in 2008, extends now to 2014.

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