The Tour de France pulls in millions of TV viewers every year – in 2016 the race drew in over 7.3million people in total, with an average of 785,000 taking to their sofas per stage.
UK viewers can enjoy live broadcasts and highlights on ITV4, Europsport, and S4C if you’d like to hear the action in Welsh.
Which channel you select probably comes down to your chosen TV package, but may also be influenced by your commentators of choice.
ITV4: Ned Boulting and David Millar
Up until 2016, ITV4’s Tour de France commentary came from Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen. The pair continued as a duo on America’s NBC channel. However, early in 2018, broadcaster and former pro Paul Sherwen passed away; news of his death was greeted by an outpouring of grief from former colleagues and fans.
Sherwen was greatly respected and missed. However, the show must go on. From 2016 onwards, ITV’s chosen commentary twosome has been the dynamic duo of Ned Boulting and former pro David Millar.
ITV’s highlights production is usually presented by sports journalist and broadcaster Gary Imlach alongside former pro and three-time yellow jersey wearer Chris Boardman.
Eurosport: Carlton Kirby, Rob Hatch, Sean Kelly
Eurosport has had a major shake-up for this year, though many of the same names remain.
In the commentary box during live airings, we have Carlton Kirby, Rob Hatch and the legendary Sean Kelly. The trio has three weeks to cover off as many well loved phrases as possible.
Grand Tour coverage and breaking news will come from Matt Stephens, whilst in the studio Orla Chennaoui will be the lead presenter for 20-30 minute build-up shows. She’ll be joined by Bradley Wiggins, Brian Smith and Dan Lloyd throughout the race.
Also not to be missed are the Bradley Wiggins Show podcasts, which will no doubt touch on Tour action with the 2012 victor airing his views, and ‘The Breakaway’ debate show, hosted by Chennaoui, which will be available on digital platforms – with debate and analysis throughout the race.
Alberto Contador and Juan Antonio Flecha continue to work for Eurosport International, so they will feature throughout the coverage but not within the UK studio.