— Published 16 August 2023

David Lappartient proud of his Super Mondials

A success, a real success. David Lappartient, President of the International Cycling Union (UCI), had nothing but praise for the first edition of the “Super Mondials”, held from August 5 to 13 in Glasgow, Scotland. The French manager explained to AFP and Radio France: “It was the first time, it was a bit of a risk, but it turned into a real success. When you see 150,000 to 200,000 people in the streets of Glasgow today (Sunday August 13) for the women’s race, it’s a reflection of what’s happened over the last ten days. It was an extraordinary atmosphere. A lot of work had gone into the preparations, and the five years weren’t too much. We had Covid, Brexit, the war in Ukraine, inflation. But the result lives up to our expectations.” For David Lappartient, there’s no doubt that the event’s novel format, with 13 disciplines grouped together on the same bill (19 at the next edition in 2027 in Haute-Savoie), has proved a winner. It gave less media-savvy disciplines unprecedented visibility. Above all, the formula has had a spectacular effect on television audiences, with a million viewers in Great Britain for the downhill mountain bike race, and over 3 million in France for the men’s road race. “That’s huge, and in many markets we’re well beyond what individual events were doing, assures the UCI President. Some were simply not broadcast.” But there’s no question, he warns, of organizing the “Super Mondials” every year. They will remain scheduled once every four years, in the pre-Olympic year. “If we did it every year, we’d lose a bit of the DNA of these cycling Olympics, he explains. What’s more, the number of venues capable of staging such an event is pretty limited, since you need to be able to do downhill mountain biking, have a BMX track and a velodrome.” For the 2031 edition, the third in history, the UCI has already received expressions of interest, not only from Europe.