Largest Sporting Events in the World - Top 5

The other day someone asked me "what is the largest sporting event in the world?"  The first thing that came to mind was the World Cup and then the Super Bowl.  I commented that in this country the clear answer is the Super Bowl but worldwide I would have to say the World Cup.

After I answered the question I wondered how I could figure out what is the largest sporting event in the world.  After some research I determined it was basically impossible to factually state what is the largest so I decided to write a blog about 5 of the largest sporting events in the world.  I won't say top 5 because I'm not sure anyone has the data to support that kind of claim.

So in essence these are 5 of the largest sporting events as seen through my eyes.  I have a lot of sports knowledge and I have researched many sporting events outside of the US.  Based on my findings and experiences I have chose 5 events to represent the largest sporting events in the world.

World Cup

Soccer, or football, has been long considered the most popular sport in the world. I will definitely agree with that statement simply based on the amount of areas in the world that play soccer compared to other sports. So when it comes to the World Cup, it is the most popular event for the most popular sport. This event is one of the most attended and watched worldwide.

Olympics:  Summer Games - Winter Games

Most think of the Olympics as the longest running international competition. It is hard to argue with that statement given the tenure of the Olympic Games. Competition dates back to the days of ancient Greece and the spirit of the event is as strong as it has ever been. As an athlete you always want the chance to compete to be the best in the world. As a spectator you are very curious to know who the best is.  The Olympic Games create one of if not the best atmospheres in all of sports.

Super Bowl

The Super Bowl. I don't really think I have to say much about this one. Unlike the previous two events, the Super Bowl happens every year and there is nothing bigger in the US. Over 100 million people tune in to the Super Bowl every year now and the advertisement dollars are insane. As stated for the World Cup, American football the most popular sporting event for the most popular sport. Only this is just for the US and not the entire world.

UEFA Euro Cup

Well I said it before so I'll say it again. Soccer is the world's most popular sport. Hence we have two soccer events on the list. England is the home of soccer and Europe is where soccer began its growth into the social phenomenon it is today. The UEFA Euro Cup is a battle to be the best in Europe and that title is not taken lightly. Think of this as World Cup (B).

24 Hours of Le Mans

Outside of soccer the most frequented sport is auto racing. Auto racing is highly popular throughout the world because everyone wants to go fast. Not really but I'm pretty sure there are some racing fans out there who are simply speed junkies. But speed isn't always the name of the game. Sometimes its a matter of endurance. The 24 Hours at Le Mans is the pinnacle of endurance competitions. It is also the oldest active auto racing event. Crowds of over 250.000 gather at this event annually to watch the event live.

This is an open forum so if you disagree with or have something to add to this list then please feel free to comment.  We love to interact with our readers!

2 thoughts on “Largest Sporting Events in the World - Top 5”

  • Shane Kenney

    Great blog Craig! Very insightful. I'm a little surprised you didn't include the WNBA in your top 5, however. The attendance rates are through the roof and are certainly worthy of a top 5 spot. Give the league a littler recognition next time! Outside of that, I think you are pretty spot on.

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