Organizers: Cycling race generated $83M for Colorado |

Organizers: Cycling race generated $83M for Colorado

The Associated Press
Aspen, CO Colorado
George Hincapie of BMC Racing celebrates winning the Queen Stage of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge as he crosses the finish line in downtown Aspen on Wednesday afternoon. Tejay Van Garderen finished in second place for the stage and took the overall lead in the race. (Patrick Ghidossi/The Aspen Times)
Patrick Ghidossi |

DENVER – Organizers of the inaugural USA Pro Cycling Challenge said Tuesday that the weeklong bicycle race attracted more than 1 million spectators and brought $83.5 million to Colorado.

Levi Leipheimer won the 518-mile race in August, which included 25 hours of national television coverage and reached an international audience of more than 150 countries and territories.

The economic impact study was conducted by IFM, a global sports research firm, and based on interviews with 2,000 attendees. Among other findings, the firm reported nearly one-quarter of the spectators came from out of state.

More than $67 million was generated from direct spending by traveling spectators on lodging, food, transportation and entertainment, IFM said. The remainder came from team, staff, sponsor and vendor spending, employment created by the event and resulting tax effects of the race.

The race covered more than 500 miles of Colorado terrain, including Aspen, Avon, Breckenridge, Colorado Springs, Denver, Gunnison, Salida and Steamboat Springs.

The study found that the average size of groups watching the race was large, averaging five people, and the average household income of attendees was $113,918. The study found that nearly 85 percent of those visiting from out-of-state said they would return to Colorado because of their experience at the bike race.

The study didn’t look at how much money host cities spent on roads, police and other expenses. Aspen has said it lost nearly $16,000 on its sponsorship.

Bike race spokeswoman Stacie Lange said she couldn’t comment on Aspen’s experience but said all the cities and towns that hosted this year’s race, including Aspen, have asked to be included on next year’s race.

Applications are due by the end of the month and organizers expect to announce the host cities before Thanksgiving.

Next year’s race will be held Aug. 20-26.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Aspen and Snowmass Village make the Aspen Times’ work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.


Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User