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11
AUGUST 2015
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The Canadian Business Journal
provincial and federal government. Québecor
and Air Transat are major sponsors that have
believed in the Grands Prix Cyclistes since the
beginning, among several others.
“The only way we can exist is by having
good partnerships and sponsors. Without them,
no events would take place,” Leblanc states.
Of course, in addition, no sporting event is
complete without spectators. Those who would
rather see the races live than on TV are encour-
aged to attend this September and join the crowd.
“This is the only major sporting event that is
free to watch. I’m not selling any tickets. People
can come, walk around the course, bring their
families and have a picnic,” suggests Leblanc.
Putting on a great event
Since the very beginning, the Grands Prix Cyclistes
have put in a lot of logistic effort to make sure
the riders have a safe but difficult sporting chal-
lenge. Since their background is in television
production (the Grands Prix Cyclistes de Québec
et de Montréal are a part of Groupe Serdy) they
have put effort toward the production of the
international feed signal which is broadcasted
in 130 countries around the world. In fact, they
were among the first to produce cycling in HD
in 2010. The quality of the production helped
them develop solid partnerships with Eurosport,
IMG and locally, with TVA Sports. Since 2010, the
Grands Prix Cyclistes have received great media
coverage from around the world throughout the
week of the races in September.
For their partners, this is of great value
because of the visibility received by Canada,
Québec, and the cities of Montréal and Québec.
It is also beneficial to their private sponsors.
They have just renewed their partnerships with
Montréal and Québec City until 2019. This is
a great vote of confidence, and it pushes the
Grands Prix Cyclistes to develop the races and try
to do even better than they already have.
Because cycling isn’t a big part of Canadian
sporting culture, as is the case in Europe, the
Grands Prix Cyclistes initially had a large work-
load. But, after five years they have managed to
build a solid fan base, as an average of 200,000
spectators show up around the courses every
year, rain or shine. To conclude, this is the
only major sporting event that is free to attend
for everyone. Furthermore, if you come close
to the start line early enough, you’ll be able
to chat with the riders. They’re great profes-
sionals, but also very easy going. They will
be happy to sign autographs and even have
their picture taken with you. The Grands Prix
Cyclistes would like to encourage readers to
come out and enjoy the show, and take advan-
tage of the luck we have to be able to host two
races of this calibre in Canada.
CBJ
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