Amaury Sport Organization (ASO) has announced the launch of a women’s Tour de France in 2022, with eight days of racing.
ASO promises that the race will adopt the same codes, values and symbols as the men’s race.
The first stage must end in Paris on the Champs-Elysées on July 24, alongside the last stage of the 2022 men’s Tour de France, and end on July 31.
The women’s run will be sponsored by the global online fitness platform Zwift, which has been announced as a presenting partner.
The race will be officially called “Tour de France Women with Zwift” during a four-year partnership with the company.
“Building an event like the Tour de France Women with Zwift means offering women’s cycling an event ready to highlight the sporting qualities of certain exceptional riders,” said Christian Prudhomme, director of the Tour de France.
“The birth of this race represents the prospect of seeing a women’s race rise to the top of world sport.
“The riders and champions will no doubt be eager to take difficult roads and aim for the most prestigious of the prizes, the Yellow Jersey. “
Full details of the race are expected to be announced on October 14, during the 2022 Tour de France presentation at the Palais des Congrès in Paris.
The race will be part of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) premier Women’s WorldTour circuit.
ASO organizers have come under pressure in recent years to introduce a women’s Tour de France, with La Course by le Tour de France being seen as a precursor to the launch of a full event.
Eric Min, CEO and co-founder of Zwift, welcomed the opportunity to be the presenting partner of the race.
“This is an extremely important announcement for us as we look to leverage our investment in women’s cycling and really help grow and develop the sport,” said Min.
“Building on the success of the virtual Tour de France on Zwift last year, it took several months and Zwift and are delighted to make this dream come true. I have long been a fan of the offensive style of women’s running.
“I really believe the women’s peloton has some of the most exciting bike races to watch and it deserves a much bigger platform to exhibit these talents and skills.
“I am proud that we can play a big role in making the Tour de France Women with Zwift a reality in 2022.
“Together we can bring women’s cycling to a wider audience and inspire new generations of female cyclists for years to come. “
ASO confirmed France Televisions has agreed to show extensive coverage of the new event, with live coverage on its free channels and digital platforms.
The agreement will cover the first four editions of the race, with France Televisions also in charge of the production of the international flow.
A broadcast agreement has also been concluded between Eurovision Sportive, a division of the European Broadcasting Union.
The agreement will cover 54 additional European countries.
ASO revealed that TV2 in Denmark and Norway, we in the Nederlands, GARDEN and RTBF in Belgium, TG4 in Ireland, RTVE in Spain, and SRG SSR in Switzerland are also planning to include the race in their program.
“I am very happy and proud of this agreement with the ASO group, which will allow all our viewers, starting next year, to discover the Tour de France Femmes on our linear channels and france.tv”, declared Delphine Ernotte Cunci , President of France Televisions et CHILD.
“First of all, I am delighted because this new event will contribute significantly to the exposure of women’s sport in general, and cycling in particular – a discipline that France Télévisions has supported for many years.
“Secondly, as President of the EBU, I am proud to see this competition benefit from media exposure across Europe, as its male counterpart is already enjoying. “
Existing Tour de France partners also supported the race, with LCL supporting the yellow jersey of the leader of the race, while E. Leclerc will support the polka dot jersey of the mountain standings.
Liv Cycling, the company dedicated to increasing the number of women on the bike, will debut as a major partner supporting the best ranking of young cyclists.
FDJ, which supported La Course, will join the major partners of the event.
Swiss watchmakers Tissot have been confirmed as race timekeepers.