Anyone would think there was a bike race on in this country judging by the number of press releases clogging our inboxes at Rouleur Towers, many vaguely Tour-related.
Our pick of the crop, for your delight and delectation.
Oven chips, that renowned dietary staple component of champions the world over, will be on the Tour menu for the opening stages as McCain Foods becomes an official supplier to the race.
We can hardly wait for team chefs Hannah Grant (Tinkoff-Saxo) and Søren Kristiansen (Sky) to start posting photos of the results on Twitter from Saturday. ‘Pommes frites avec sauce curry’, peut-être? ‘Des quartiers de pommes de terre au poivre’, maybe? ‘Gaufres Skiptonoise’ sounds appealing.
“Our riders need good, wholesome British food after racing, not fancy foreign muck – chips are the future,” a team Sky spokesman didn’t comment.
Bums on Seats
Pippa Middleton, to whose name a Google search automatically adds the word “bum”, has inspired huge demand for a charity ride having completed the Race Across America with her team of eight, according to organisers Global Adventure Challenges.
Middleton, 30, famous for being the sister of someone famous (who is married to someone famous, although we’re not entirely sure what he does), has been shamelessly hijacked in this masterpiece of PR mumbo-jumbo snappily entitled: “Tour de France Fever forces Global Adventure Challenges to open 2015 London to Paris registrations early – and Pippa Middleton’s bottom is certain to spur on registrations too!”
Wella Wella Wella… Huh?
The city of York has pulled out all the stops for its Tour coverage. Rowntree Park sounds perfect for race fans and John Travolta groupies alike.
“At 2pm the large screen will change from the sporting action to a sing-along version of Grease,” the council’s media release informs us.
Eh? So just as the action is hotting up, they cut to Greased Lightnin and Kenickie’s quiff. If only Sandy Casar were still riding.
“Sandy, Sandy, why, oh Sandy?”
STAT’S THE WAY, UH HUH, UH HUH
4 – Number of British riders starting the 2014 Tour.
10 – Number of British riders starting the 1968 Tour.
We’ve come a long way, baby…
TWEET OF THE WEEK
“I was selected for TdF last week, then they pulled me last night. Wiggo, Dowsett, Pete, Swifty, fancy a city break? I hear York’s nice.” A perfectly peeved David Millar rounds up the Likely Lads.
Millar’s crossing: the Scot recounts his doomed but delicious attack in 2009 on the sopping wet road to Barcelona.
Any chance of Simon Yates being allowed off the leash to do this in France? Or Yorkshire, for that matter…
Ah, the stirring tone of a Pathé newsreel. It’s 1951: Bobet, Coppi, Bartoli and the rest, strident music, perfectly enunciated voiceover. Check out the guys wandering around in the road at the end. It wouldn’t happen today. Would it?