Tour de France Wildcards

With the Giro making its picks for May, ASO will also choose four teams for 2013 Tour de France. Who gets the golden ticket?

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Saturday Shorts

What bike is Jérôme Coppel riding? It says Time on the side so you’d think it is a frame from the French manufacturer… but it looks very much like a Trek Speed Concept 9.0 frame, no?

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Tour de France wildcards?

The Giro d’Italia announced the four teams invited to take part in the race last week. The choice of Team NetApp caused some controversy but that’s all part of the fun and I was pleased to see race direttore Michele Acquarone setting out the conditions before and explaining the timing and then commenting on the picks afterwards. And today we’ve learned of the six teams invited to the Tour of Flanders in April.

By contrast the wildcard picks for the Tour de France are a mystery. I’m told we’ll hear some time in February and the criteria for an invitation to the world’s biggest bike race are a mystery. Is a French exam involved?

Jokes aside, we can guess organisers ASO want some French riders in the race and also to invite some exciting teams for the race. With this in mind, here’s a look at the candidates for one of the four golden tickets this July.

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Saur-Sojasun’s rubbish jersey

maillot saur-sojasun

A comment on the blog yesterday about riders ditching their waste food wrappers reminded me of a small detail worth sharing. The Saur-Sojasun jersey has two small pockets on the side for riders to put waste, for example empty gel wrappers.

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Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose

It’s obviously very satisfying. Three years ago I lost the leader’s jersey on the first stage. This time I hope I won’t get caught out. Saur-Sojasun’s Jimmy Engoulvent, speaking after his prologue win in the Tour of Luxembourg, a repeat of his prologue victory in 2007. Only history repeated itself on the first stage, Engoulvent … Read more