Tour of Missouri Update
Early last week, the economic impact figures were released for the 2008 Tour of Missouri, which came through Branson on September 10, 2008. In 2007, the weather couldn't have been more perfect for the entire race, however, this years race dealt with some ugly forecasts, and many spectators braved some terrible weather for the start in St. Joseph. Despite the bad timing of the weather, the 2008 Tour of Missouri showed a substantial improvement over the 2007event. Here are some reportings:
- Total number of spectators rose by 76,000 to 434,000 for the event as a whole.
- The economic impact overall rose $3.6 million to $29.8 million.
- 72% of the spectators rated the Tour of Missouri more highly than any other professional sporting event they'd been to in the past 12 months.
- The website nearly doubled its global reach totaling 139 countries visiting this year.
- Next year's Tour will be classified as 2.HC, which is the highest ranking in the US
This year's time trial in Branson was once again a huge success, and this year, was the turning point in the race. Last year's time trial was not as important to the overall outcome due to a huge breakaway pack in stage 2 that could not be made up for in a time trial. This year, the entire podium plus the 4th place finisher at the time trial in Branson predicted precisely the top 4 finishers for the entire tour.
- Christian Vande Velde
- Michael Rogers
- Svein Tuft
- George Hincapie (pictured)
Unfortunately, the future of this event is in jeopardy and relies solely on the outcome of the upcoming election. Lt. Governor Peter Kinder, who played a crucial role in getting the Tour of Missouri here initially, will continue to grow this event year after year as long as the economic impact is favorable. His opponent, however, Sam Page will begrudgingly fulfill the contract to host the Tour of Missouri in 2009, but will not renew the Tour past next year, and the event will cease to exist. On behalf of the Tour of Missouri, Medalist Sports, Lt. Governor Kinder, all the sponsors, and the thousands of volunteers who have ensured the growth of this event into a world-class race in just two years, please show your support of the tour however you feel so inclined. Write letters to your local editor, use your blog, spread the word!
Labels: Tour of Missouri