Media Life Magazine: “One nasty spill for the Tour de France.” The article’s gist: The “cume” — the number of people who watched at least once, was up. But average viewership for the broadcasts was down as much as 20 percent. The reasons: Number One–no Yank stars (sorry, Christian Vande Velde). Number Two–le dopage. Quote from the article:
“Versus says that a larger number of people than last year tuned into at least some portion of Tour coverage, but average viewership took a hit, meaning many of them did not return after sampling.
“Doping deserves some of the blame.
“ ‘Obviously it’s the elephant in the room,’ says Marc Fein, Versus executive vice president of programming, production and business operations at Versus. ‘Some people might be turned off a bit by the bad things that have happened, the doping in the sport.’ ”