IMG Hired To Sell Italian Cycling To World
Italian media company RCS has signed an eight-year agreement with IMG to try to "boost broadcast revenues for its cycling events, capitalizing on growing int'l interest in the sport," according to Keith Weir of REUTERS. The sports event arm of RCS, which publishes Italian newspapers Gazzetta dello Sport and Corriere della Sera, is "seeking a bigger worldwide audience for races it organizes," such as the three-week Giro d'Italia. RCS Sport runs 32 days of int'l cycling each year, including the Milan-San Remo one-day classic. RCS Sport CEO Giacomo Catano said that he did not believe that the Giro, held in May, was "condemned to live forever in the shadow of the Tour de France," which begins this weekend. The Giro currently broadcasts to 165 countries, compared with 190 for the French race. RCS Sport Managing Dir Michele Acquarone said that the deal with IMG "would build on efforts to bring more int'l riders to the Giro in recent years and experiment with starting the race in other European nations" (REUTERS, 6/28).