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I RODE IN LE TOUR 2003 ...

… well thirty kilometres around Paris before the Peloton arrived.

La Randonnée Du Centenaire was a special event created to celebrate the year of the Centenary of Le Tour. 10,000 cyclists gathered before sunrise and cycled the circuit the Tour riders rode later in the final stage.

The greatest challenge was not the uphill leg, bumping over the cobblestones on the Champs-Élysées, or the presence of traffic – the road was closed, but the bike. I spent as much time off the rented bike with mechanicals, as I did covering the thirty kilometres.

However, the sheer joy of riding on cyling’s sacred Mecca, overcame the frustration of a seat that swivelled, a flat tyre and a chain that refused to stay in place.

Another one ticked off my bucket-list.


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