Director of the Tour de France, Christian Prudhomme confided in the microphone of Massimo Lorenzi. He notably evokes his fascination for cycling, the fear of accidents, the arrival of the Tour in Lausanne, doping, the women’s Tour de France…
“The Tour is a free show for people on the side of the road. It’s unique. The atmosphere of the Tour, the caravan that precedes the champions, the enhancement thanks to the media, thanks to landscape television“, explains Christian Prudhomme from the outset.
“I love tennis, I love the Wimbledon tournament. But if you don’t have the image of Becker, Edberg, Sampras or Federer, there is nothing. There is just a lawn. With or without riders, the decor of the Tour de France, the landscapes, the setting magnify the exploits of the champions“, he specifies.
The strong man of the Grande Boucle also returned to the stages that will stop in Switzerland. “We are lucky to have around 300 applications for around 30 places per year. When we are presented with a project between Aigle, headquarters of the UCI, and Lausanne, the Olympic capital, we look at it carefully from the start. Because for us, it’s also prestigious to come to Lausanne, because then we come to Switzerland fairly regularly. We hadn’t been here since 2016.“
Patron of the Tour since 2007, Christian Prudhomme is still fascinated by cycling. “The strength of the champion cyclist is his courage. When he falls, he has only one obsession: to start again, to waste as little time as possible. These guys, these champions, these champions, with the rebirth of the women’s tour, are people of very, very high caliber for me.“
“Cheating is inherent in human activity”
Asked about doping in cycling, Christian Prudhomme does not hide. “Doping is incompatible with the regularity of sport. Now it exists everywhere. Cheating is inherent in human activity. I knew her in journalism in the past, in all companies, everywhere, there are people who cheat. Cycling may have cheated before others, perhaps more than others. There have been organized systems, but it is not consubstantial with cycling. A lot of work has been done. I’m not naive either. There are certainly still people who cheat like everywhere. But the bicycle has made its revolution.”
Finally, the former journalist spoke about the future of women’s cycling. “I believe in the future of women’s cycling and I wouldn’t have told you that a few years ago. There has been a phenomenal leap forward lately. The women’s Tour de France existed in the 80s, there were 6 events. Then, others created another event called the Women’s Great Loop, which lasted a few years and stopped because, like the previous one, there was no financial balance. Yet another was created the Women’s Route de France. Same causes, same effects. Today, I believe that we have entered a virtuous circle which means that the event will be balanced from an economic point of view, which is obviously essential for its sustainability and to show that we believe in it. .“
Massimo Lorenzi, text by Axel David
The main start times of the stopwatch in Copenhagen (01.07)
4:00 p.m.: Jérémy Lecroq (FRA / first runner).
4:07 p.m .: Stefan Bissegger (SUI)
4:11 p.m .: Mathieu van der Poel (NED)
4:20 p.m.: Primoz Roglic (SLO)
4:34 p.m .: Stefan Küng (SUI)
4:41 p.m .: Geraint Thomas (GBR)
4:42 p.m .: Jonas Vingegaard (DEN)
5:03 p.m.: Filippo Ganna (ITA)
5.04 p.m .: Wout van Aert (BEL).
5:05 p.m .: Tadej Pogacar (SLO)
5:22 p.m .: Kasper Asgreen (DEN)
6:01 p.m .: Silvan Dillier (SUI)
6:33 p.m.: Marc Hirschi (SUI)
6:55 p.m .: Marc Soler (ESP / last runner)
July 1: 1st stage Copenhagen – Copenhagen, 13.2 km (individual time trial).
July 2: 2nd stage Roskilde (DEN) – Nyborg (DEN), 202.2 km.
July 3: 3rd stage Vejle (DEN) – Sönderborg (DEN), 182 km.
July 4: transfer. July 5: 4th stage Dunkirk – Calais, 171.5 km.
July 6: 5th stage Lille Métropole – Arenberg Porte du Hainaut, 157 km.
July 7: 6th stage Binche (BEL) – Longwy, 219.9 km.
July 8: 7th stage Tomblaine – La super Planche des Belles Filles, 176.3 km.
July 9: 8th stage Dole – Lausanne, 186.3 km.
July 10: 9th stage Aigle – Châtel, 192.9 km.
July 11: rest in Morzine.
July 12: 10th stage Morzine – Megève, 148.1 km.
July 13: 11th stage Albertville – Col du Granon, 151.7 km. July 14: 12th stage Briançon – Alpe d’Huez, 165.1 km.
July 15: 13th stage Bourg d’Oisans – Saint-Etienne, 192.6 km.
July 16: 14th stage Saint-Etienne – Mende, 192.5 km.
July 17: 15th stage Rodez – Carcassonne, 202.5 km. July 18: rest in Carcassonne.
July 19: 16th stage Carcassonne – Foix, 178.5 km.
July 20: 17th stage Saint-Gaudens – Peyragudes, 129.7 km.
July 21: 18th stage Lourdes – Hautacam, 143.2 km.
July 22: 19th stage Castelnau-Magnoac – Cahors, 188.3 km.
July 23: 20th stage Lacapelle-Marival – Rocamadour, 40.7 km (individual time trial).
July 24: 21st stage Paris La Défense Arena – Paris Champs-Elysées, 115.6 km.
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