Paris, France, July 23, 2017: For the first time ever, riders in cycling’s showpiece, the Tour de France finale, have crossed through the centre of Paris’ iconic and historic Grand Palais, en route to the finish line on the world-famous Champs-Elysées.
As part of a collaboration between Tour de France organisers ASO and Paris 2024, the peloton spectacularly passed through the Paris 2024 venue, evoking the idea of Paris Olympic Park – the core concept of the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic bid – and highlighting, once again, the city’s passion and love of sport in a truly unique celebration in the heart of Paris.
Several hundred guests gathered under the renowned steel-framed glass roof of the Grand Palais, the proposed 2024 venue for Taekwondo and Fencing, to witness this historic moment.
While there, they were treated to high-tech sport demonstrations in boxing, fencing and archery from French Olympians and Generation 2024 athletes, including Paris 2024 Ambassador and Rio 2016 boxing silver medallist Sarah Ourahmoune, which incorporated 3D digital animations overlaid over the sport.
Ahead of the men’s race, 2,024 women riders recruited by FDJ – one of Paris 2024 official sponsor, also had a chance to take part in the unique experience of riding through the iconic monument as they covered the last eight kilometres of the famous final stage before arriving on the Champs Elysées – the back drop for marathon, road cycling and triathlon in 2024.
Paris 2024 Co-Chairs Tony Estanguet and Bernard Lapasset joined Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo inside the Grand Palais, before Estanguet went to join Tour de France winner Chris Froome on the podium on the Champs-Elysées to present the iconic Yellow Jersey.
On every stage of the Tour, a Paris 2024 representative has been present for the Yellow Jersey ceremony, with ambassadors such as Sarah Ourahmoune, Olympic silver medallist Emmeline Ndongue, four-time Olympian and Paris 2024 Sports Director Jean-Philippe Gatien, Bernard Lapasset, IOC Member and Olympic champion Guy Drut and French Sports Minister and double Olympic gold medallist Laura Flessel among those honouring riders.
This year’s 104th edition will be one of the most watched sport events of the year, with an expected worldwide television audience of around 3.5 billion people. It is also the number one sporting event in the world that is free to watch from the roadside, with 12 million spectators typically lining up to witness the Tour each year to share this unique moment of sport and emotions.
Across 21 stages, cycling’s flagship Grand Tour has showcased the very best of France, including Stade Velodrome of Marseille yesterday, and the ultimate in human endurance to audiences around the globe.
Today’s astonishing images of the moment the riders entered the Grand Palais were broadcast to 190 countries worldwide.
Paris 2024 Co-Chair Tony Estanguet, said:
“We are proud to have collaborated with Tour de France organisers ASO and the City of Paris on this exceptional sporting occasion, a fitting finale to what has been an incredible tour de force by the world’s best riders.
Our vision for 2024 truly came alive today with one of Paris’ most iconic and historic monuments resonating with passion for sport – passion that was shared not only by those who witnessed it first-hand but also by the millions of fans watching it broadcast live around the world.”
Paris 2024 Co-Chair Bernard Lapasset, said:
“For the past three weeks Paris 2024 has been with the riders every step of the way, celebrating this joyous sporting occasion across the country, culminating in yesterday’s time-trial in Marseille and Paris 2024 football venue Stade Velodrome, and today’s historic final stage in the heart of Paris.
We want to thank ASO, who we have worked alongside for the past 10 months to make this vision a reality, for providing us with an exceptional platform from which to showcase Paris’ Olympic legacy and what we can offer to the Olympic Movement in 2024, if awarded these Games.
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