The Tour de France is an annual male multiple stage bicycle race primarily held in France, while also occasionally making passes through nearby countries. Like the other Grand Tours (the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España), it consists of 21 stages over a little more than 3 weeks.
The race was first organized in 1903 to increase sales for the newspaper L’Auto; which is currently run by the Amaury Sport Organisation. The race has been held annually since its first edition in 1903 except when it was stopped for the two World Wars. As the Tour gained prominence and popularity, the race was lengthened and its reach began to extend around the globe. Participation expanded from a primarily French field, as male riders from all over the world began to participate in the race each year. The Tour is a UCI World Tour event, which means that the teams that compete in the race are mostly UCI WorldTeams, with the exception of the teams that the organizers invite.