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The Future of Professional Road Cycling

In: The Economics of Professional Road Cycling


  • Daam Reeth

    (KU Leuven Campus Brussels)

  • Wim Lagae

    (KU Leuven Campus Antwerp)


Professional road cycling is one of the oldest professional sports. Its rich tradition dates back to the end of the nineteenth century. The sport is hugely popular in some core European countries and gaining momentum around the world. At the same time, however, there are some dark clouds overshadowing the further development of professional road cycling as a truly major sport at the worldwide level. The particular nature of professional road cycling, an outdoor team sport practiced on public roads by individual riders, makes that the sport is characterized by a large and heterogeneous set of stakeholders with various interests. This complex structure and the many conflict of interests that result from it have undoubtedly disadvantaged the development of professional road cycling in the past two decades. The sport also suffers heavily from its association with doping. As a result of these evolutions, high-profile multinational companies have become more reluctant to invest in professional road cycling. From this, it could be concluded that in a certain way, professional road cycling has failed to make a successful transition into the twenty-first century yet. In this chapter, we present a glimpse at how professional road cycling could look like in the future if all stakeholders are willing to tackle the challenges the sport is facing now and we introduce nine fundamentals that, in our opinion, are essential key to the future of professional road cycling.

Suggested Citation

  • Daam Reeth & Wim Lagae, 2016. "The Future of Professional Road Cycling," Sports Economics, Management, and Policy, in: Daam Van Reeth & Daniel Joseph Larson (ed.), The Economics of Professional Road Cycling, edition 1, chapter 0, pages 313-341, Springer.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:semchp:978-3-319-22312-4_14
    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-22312-4_14

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