The relationship between mathematics and statistical reasoning frequently receives comment (Vere-Jones 1995, Moore 1997); however most of the research into the area tends to focus on mathematics anxiety. Gnaldi (2003) showed that in a statistics course for psychologists, the statistical understanding of students at the end of the course depended on students' basic numeracy, rather than the number or level of previous mathematics courses the student had undertaken. As part of a study into the development of statistical thinking at the interface between secondary and tertiary education, students enrolled in an introductory data analysis subject were assessed regarding their statistical reasoning, basic numeracy skills, mathematics background and attitudes towards statistics. This work reports on some key relationships between these factors and in particular the importance of numeracy to statistical reasoning.