With the Tour Down Under now under way, we thought we’d bring you an overview of the event, and why it could be one of the most exciting ones this year.
The southern hemisphere’s big summer event might not get as much exposure as the European tours, but it sure is worthy of the hype. If you’re an Australian resident, then you’ll know all about the sweltering Southern Australian road race. Northern hemisphere dwellers however, tend to miss out on this brilliant event, for lack of media coverage and accessibility. In this guide, we’re going to give you the low down on the Tour Down Under, so you can keep up to date with the tour and know what to expect.
The Tour Down Under takes place in the Southern Australian city of Adelaide, and is quite different from the terrain you’d normally see in the Tour de France or the Giro d’Italia. The TDU, as we’ll abbreviate it to, takes place on mainly flat, straight terrain with the occasional rolling stretch. These undulating, wide-open roads are far removed from the narrow, winding cities of the Tour de France and the mountainous alpine climbs. In fact, the whole of the six day sun-drenched course looks like time trial terrain, which is funny considering it doesn’t actually include a time trial section!
The teams and riders
Switching continents doesn’t necessarily mean switching riders; you’ll see all the big name teams and the same recognisable riders as you would in ‘le tour’. This year, the Tour Down Under team list consists of:
- BMC Racing Team (USA)
- Orica Greenedge (AUS)
- Team Giant-Shimano (NED)
- Lotto-Belisol (BEL)
- Trek Factory Racing (USA)
- Tinkoff-Saxo (DEN)
- Team Sky (GBR)
- AG2R La Mondiale (FRA)
- Astana (KAZ)
- Team Europcar (FRA)
- Katusha (RUS)
- FDJ.fr (FRA)
- Movistar Team (ESP)
- Garmin-Sharp (USA)
- Omega Pharma – Quick Step
- Belkin Pro Cycling Team (NED)
- Lampre-Merida (ITA)
- Cannondale Pro Cycling (ITA)
- Drapac Professional Cycling (AUS)
- UniSA (AUS)
With star riders such as: Gerraint Thomas (SKY), Richie Porte (SKY), Andre Greipel (Lotto Belisol), Marcel Kittel (Giant-Shimano) and Cadel Evans (BMC), the Tour Down Under is no second-rate event. It may be difficult to day-trip down there for those of us who don’t live nearby, but you can see live coverage on Sky Sports 1, as well as highlights on Sky Sports 2 & 3.
The good thing about watching the Tour down under, is that you get a whole new colour system to get used to:
Ochre (orange) is the overall race leader, white is the KOM (King of the Mountains), blue is sprint leader, black is the best young rider and the red is the most aggressive rider (similar to the combativity jersey in the Tour de France.)
ProBikeKit Down Under and all around the world
ProBikeKit, as you guys know, is a worldwide and internationally recognised brand. We offer a wide and extensive range of cycling clothing, components and accessories, from the top professional brands, to our innovative own brand kit. If you’re reading this from down under, then you may want to head over to ProBikeKit Australia. Reading this from the United States? Check out ProBikeKitUSA to see all of our amazing products. We offer fantastic cycling equipment and offers on all of our websites, with tailored and relevant content for each respective country. If you’ve come from our UK site, however, you can get back to the store here.