History and Honour Roll
The Santos Tour Down Under is Australia's greatest cycling race, with a rich history as the highest-regarded and most popular bike race in the southern hemisphere.
In 2018, the event boasted an action-packed nine days of world-class cycling with gala dinners, street parties and an amazing atmosphere for riders and spectators, visitors and locals alike.
The event was first staged in 1999 with local rider Stuart O’Grady taking the win. Since then, numerous internationally renowned cyclists have joined the Honour Roll. The event has grown year-on-year to become the biggest cycling race in the southern hemisphere.
In 2006, the Santos Tour Down Under introduced the iconic Ochre Leader’s Jersey. The colour Ochre is strongly associated with Australian culture and history, and is unique to the Santos Tour Down Under.
The Santos Tour Down Under joined the prestigious UCI WorldTour in 2008, the first event outside cycling's traditional home of Europe to do so. The TDU is held in January every year, making it the first event on the international cycling calendar.
In 2012, the event hosted a series of women's street criterium races, marking the first time female athletes participated in the event.
In 2015, the annual women's race was established as part of the National Road Series, and in 2016 was granted UCI 2.2 status. Now operating as the Santos Women's Tour Down Under, the race was upgraded to UCI 2.1 status for the 2018 event, and saw elite international women's teams commence their season in Adelaide.
The Santos Tour Down Under visits some of South Australia’s spectacular beaches, world-famous wine regions and historic country towns before the finale on the streets of Adelaide.
The elite of world cycling such as Peter Sagan, Cadel Evans, Marcel Kittel, Andy Schleck and Andre Greipel have all come to South Australia to conquer the roads of the Santos Tour Down Under alongside Australia’s best. In 2018, the world's top cyclists will once again be back to stamp their authority on the new season.
In 2018 the Santos Tour Down Under saw 810,000 spectators line the roads of South Australia to watch South African Daryl Impey of Mitchelton-SCOTT take the overall victory, with more than 46,000 visitors from interstate and overseas traveling just to see the event. The event generated $63.7M in economic impact for the state’s economy and contributing to many communities across the state.
TDU History Timeline
The Santos Tour Down Under begins and is won by local rider Stuart O'Grady.
The Santos Tour Down Under includes a 180-kilometre McLaren Vale stage, which remains the longest stage in the race's history.
Stuart O'Grady becomes the first person to secure two Santos Tour Down Under wins.
Michael Rogers wins the Santos Tour Down Under, despite being hit by a motorbike during Stage 5.
Cadel Evans wins the King of the Mountain classification.
Philippe Gilbert wins the Best Young Rider classification. Gilbert is best known for winning the World Road Race Championships in 2012, and for being one of only two riders to have won the three Ardennes classics in a single season, which he accomplished in 2011.
Luis Leon Sanchez wins the Santos Tour Down Under and consolidates his status as a rider to watch. He went on to win Paris-Nice in 2009 and four Tour de France stages.
The hottest race in the Santos Tour Down Under's history, with four consecutive days over 42 degrees Celsius and melting bitumen in Yankalilla.
The wettest race in the Santos Tour Down Under history, including torrential rain on Stages 4 and 5.
The Santos Tour Down Under is awarded UCI WorldTour status; the first race of cycling's traditional home of Europe to do so.
Australia's Allan Davis marks his status as the only rider to have competed in every edition of the TDU so far with an overall win.
Lance Armstrong makes his return to professional cycling at the Santos Tour Down Under.
Andre Greipel becomes the second rider to win the Santos Tour Down Under twice.
The Santos Tour Down Under records its largest crowd attendance so far, with more than 780,000 people enjoying the race.
Australia's first professional WorldTour cycling team ORICA-GreenEDGE debuts as the Santos Tour Down Under, and celebrate when team member Simon Gerrans claims overall victory.
UCI World Road Race Champion Philippe Gilbert and 2010 Tour de France winner Andy Schleck lead the field of world-class cyclists at the 2013 Santos Tour Down Under.
ORICA-GreenEDGE cyclist Simon Gerrans becomes the first person to win three editions of the Santos Tour Down Under, finishing the race just one second ahead of fellow Australian Cadel Evans.
Cadel Evans completes his final UCI WorldTour event at the Santos Tour Down Under. Evans finishes third, with team-mate and local South Australian rider Rohan Dennis the overall winner.
Australian Simon Gerrans is crowned the champion of the Santos Tour Down Under a record fourth time. ORICA-GreenEDGE celebrates double success with Gerrans' teammate Caleb Ewan sprinting home to win the final stage.
UCI World Road Race Champion Peter Sagan wears the rainbow jersey in the Santos Tour Down Under lineup, making his return to the race for the first time since 2010.
Australian rider Richie Porte (BMC Racing Team) wins the Santos Tour Down Under for the first time in his career, with Caleb Ewan (ORICA-SCOTT) winning the sprint jersey.
The Santos Tour Down Under turns 20! The twentieth edition of the event was held from 13-21 January in Adelaide and regional South Australia in searing heat, which saw one stage shortened and another raced earlier to allow riders to compete in the gruelling conditions.
The race was won by South African rider Daryl Impey (Mitchelton-SCOTT), who finished on equal time with Richie Porte (BMC) but was awarded the Santos Ochre Leader's Jersey on countback.
It was also the first edition of the Santos Women's Tour Down Under to be raced at UCI 2.1 classification. The race was won for the second time by Amanda Spratt (Mitchelton-SCOTT).
Daryl Impey makes history as the first male rider to go back-to-back by claiming his second Santos Tour Down Under general classification. It was another big year for the Mitchelton-SCOTT team, with Impey's teammate Amanda Spratt claiming her third consecutive victory in the women's race.