Agent Triple P is looking forward to following the Tour de France this year and not just because it started in London. He has been watching it for at least twenty years although last year's drug scandal nearly put him off for ever. This time they claim it's the cleanest for years (as I am sure is the countryside surrounding Chernobyl) but we will see. Sadly, it looks like Kazakh rider Alexander Vinokourov of Team Borat (sorry, Team Astana) is the favourite. What is it about a Russian (OK, Kazakh, same difference) possible winner that fills us full of indifference in a way that a French (some chance) or Spanish (not with the tighter drugs regime) doesn't. Is it that there is still a hint of the old Soviet automaton about them? Not real people, just machines? Two good Americans in the race, although if they do well the French press will crucify them, no doubt.
Talking of which the garlic-crunching press thought that Britain would be unable to run the initial stages and that no-one would turn out to watch. Au contraire, my little Froggy chums. Having watched the TdF in France we were amazed at the chaotic nature of the organisation (riders riding the wrong way down the last kiliometer to get back to their hotels into the path of oncoming riders who had still to finish) and the lack of souvenirs or things to do in the start/finish towns. It is amazing (or perhaps not) that only London has set up a "People's Village" (thanks Ken) so that visitors could visit stalls, exhibitions and stands. Not so in France. There they only have a VIP village which most people are excluded from. Vive la revolution (except in France, obviously)!
We were very impressed by the French TV company's aerial views of Kent during stage 1 yesterday. I am sure they were digitally enhancing the countryside. No doubt this will result in thousands of Froggies thinking that the Medway Towns would be an ideal holiday destination. Ho Ho!
Oh, and on the important question of the best looking podium girls, this goes to the most aggressive rider award girls.
With the best young rider girls coming a close second. They do change over the course of the Tour so we will have to monitor them closely.