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Nolte

The Spanish Situation

Teams
The number of spanish teams have steadily decreased

Year - PT/WT - PC - Conti - Total
2014 - 1 - 1 -2 - 4
2013 - 2 - 1 -2 - 5
2012 - 2 - 2- 2 - 6
2011 - 2 - 3 -2 - 7
2010 - 3 - 2 -3 - 8
2009 - 3 - 3 -2 - 8
2008 - 3 - 4 - 2 - 9
2007 - 3 - 4 -4 - 11
2006 - 4 - 5 -5 - 14
2005 - 4 - 3 -4 - 11

With protour/worldtour and procontinental being positions where you have to pay your riders, this has meant since 2006, there has been a decrease of teams paying from 9 to 2 teams in spain

race days
source: search races feature on cqranking.com - excluding the points and mountains jersey for the vuelta a espana, volta a catalunya and vuelta a pais vasco

2014 - 66 (excluding worlds)
2013 - 76
2012 - 82
2011 - 105
2010 - 113
2009 - 117
2008 - 158
2007 - 153
2006 - 157
2005 - 170
2004 - 137

Progression of young riders
Of the cqranking ranking for Spain, only 3 younger riders (my qualification of young is born after 13th June 1984. this will be a constant qualification for young. In 10 years time, hopefully there'll be 20 young riders in the top 20 Wink) are in the top 10 of Spanish riders. these are Ion Izaguirre, Benati Inxausti and Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle. In the top 20, there is a further 4 riders younger than me (Juan Jose Rojas Gil, Jesus Herrada, Pello Bilbao and Gorka Izaguire)

Of riders 23 years old and younger, only 3 have made any sort of dint on cqranking, these are Carlos Barbero of Euskadi (win in circuit de getxo and volta ao alentejo), ruben fernandez of caja rural and carlos verona of quick step though  both of these have got points for consistency rather than wins.

Movistar will take on one Spanish junior next year, Marc Soler Jimenez (66th in the worlds under 23s) and the above mentioned ruben fernandez will make the step up. caja rural will take on 3 spanish riders who were trainees with them. Rueben has also been the only spanish rider in the last 3 years to get in the top 20 of tour de l'avenir, albeit winning in 2013.
Fontfroide

The crisis of global finance capital really hit Spain hard.  You can even see it in the numbers, whether cycling teams or unemployment and political demo figures.  Until things pick up, there are unlikely to be many jobs for any sector, even tourism.

I wonder how the figures for other countries compare.  Certainly the Pro Tour can't even dig up 18 teams, maybe the reasons are related.
Nolte

Fontfroide wrote:
The crisis of global finance capital really hit Spain hard.  You can even see it in the numbers, whether cycling teams or unemployment and political demo figures.  Until things pick up, there are unlikely to be many jobs for any sector, even tourism.

I wonder how the figures for other countries compare.  Certainly the Pro Tour can't even dig up 18 teams, maybe the reasons are related.


italy in terms of world tour seem to be badly too with cannondale merging with garmin leaving lampre the only italian world tour team, but there is better situation in italy in the procontinental level and cunego's new team for 2015 moving up to the paid ranks
HuwB

Missed this thread, yesterday.

Unfortunately, as you intimated, Nolte, Italy seems to be heading in exactly the same direction.
Until recently, even having one WT team, seemed to be unlikely.
I've noticed a large drop in racing this past couple of years, as races continue to go under.

A quick check and:

2014 - 90
2013 - 104*
2012 - 135
2011 - 156
2010 - 152
2009 - 155
2008 - 158*
2007 - 153

* Ex Worlds.

With the way the UCI have shifted about many lone established Italian semi classics, to shoe in races such as the dead duck, Tour of Beijing, more could well disappear from next year's calendar.
Italy is another country hit hard by the global recession, but I do wonder if this hemorrhaging of races is solely due to financing, or are their other, underlying factors at play.
Bartali

In Italy's case I would suggest the time line Huw has posted above is inconsistent with the global financial crisis.  On the face of it, 2011 to 2014 seem too late to be purely financial.

Personally I think the UCI have a lot to answer for.  I know they are a world governing body, but I'm not convinced that the global expansion of the sport into non-traditional areas has been well though through - though I am sure much money has been made by a few!!
Bartali

In Italy's case I would suggest the time line Huw has posted above is inconsistent with the global financial crisis.  On the face of it, 2011 to 2014 seem too late to be purely financial.

Personally I think the UCI have a lot to answer for.  I know they are a world governing body, but I'm not convinced that the global expansion of the sport into non-traditional areas has been well though through - though I am sure much money has been made by a few!!
Bartali

In Italy's case I would suggest the time line Huw has posted above is inconsistent with the global financial crisis.  On the face of it, 2011 to 2014 seem too late to be purely financial.

Personally I think the UCI have a lot to answer for.  I know they are a world governing body, but I'm not convinced that the global expansion of the sport into non-traditional areas has been well though through - though I am sure much money has been made by a few!!
gerry12ie

You can say that again! Wink
MAILLOT JAUNE

Good one Gerry12ie - I just thought Bart was trying very hard to get his point across!!!!  Wink
HuwB

It is quite interesting to research.
France had a recent peak of 248 race days in 2009.
Since when it has dropped roughly a week a year, to currently stand at 208.

Belgium bucks the trend, having had just 65 races days in 2009, peaking at 79 in 2012, with this season, mid range, at 72.

Hard not to reach the conclusion though that, in the historical cycling nations, road racing is in fairly steep decline.
Fontfroide

I guess the next level of cycling must be cyclo-sportives. or perhaps local races.  Cyclo-sportives are on the rise.  The history of the Ardechoise is probably a dramatic example.  It does seem like club riding is on the rise in some countries.  And there are lots more package holidays on the bike that seem to be offered than say 15-20 years ago.  There also seem to be as many top level road racing cyclists as before.  But I guess in some countries, like Spain and Italy, a bit of a decline at the top anyway.  No idea what happens in Germany. Or Norway for that matter, although they do have a race with what most think is a lovely parcours, and certainly keep producing a very few excellent riders.  Slovenia?  Poland?  Even the USA, what is really going on there?

I am sure it is quite complex, and I am not even sure my speculation that the global financial crisis might affect things adversely is any good.  Most evaluations I have seen say that cycling is a very cheap and quite effective way to get a brand more recognised in a general sense.  Certainly getting the brand in the Tour is quite effective.  So it is a bargain in terms of cost benefit.

The thought crosses my mind that financing teams, financing big races, the cycling market as a whole and financing smaller races might all have something to do with evaluating the whole thing.
mr shifter

Whoops - Europcar to end team sponsorship in 2015.
kathy

I don't think people who don't live in countries like Spain know how hard the crisis has hit.  There is massive unemployment in my area of Spain (more than 50% amongst young people and older people).  I have friends in this situation - they despair of finding another job and are living on the breadline, struggling to keep a roof over their heads.  I work in a couple of charity shops, and people haggle over prices of 1 or 2 euros.

The only people coining it in are the financial institutions and politicians.  The banks which used to be major sponsors of sporting teams and cultural activities seem to be cutting back (to line their fat cats' pockets).

I'm just hoping Alonso's proposed Spanish cycling team gets off the ground at last, although that's all gone quiet recently.
pantanifan

I heard some of those statistics re. unemployment in Spain and they're pretty fightening. Also heard that quite a lot of young people are leaving the country for other parts of Europe or even South America to work for a while. Are there any signs of recovery as yet?
kathy

pantanifan wrote:
I heard some of those statistics re. unemployment in Spain and they're pretty fightening. Also heard that quite a lot of young people are leaving the country for other parts of Europe or even South America to work for a while. Are there any signs of recovery as yet?


A few green shoots - but it's going to take a long, long time!

Ten years ago, Colombians and Ecuadorians were coming over here in droves to work in the building and tourism industries.  Now many of them have gone back, and many Spaniards have followed them.  Spaniards in general are desperate to learn English now, because they believe this is the passport to a better future.  I keep quiet about the fact that I'm a qualified English teacher, because when I let it be known I was inundated with requests for lessons!
berck

kathy wrote:

TI keep quiet about the fact that I'm a qualified English teacher, because when I let it be known I was inundated with requests for lessons!


Well, if you run into hard times, you'll have something to fall back on. Smile

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