We’re all familiar with the ‘Orange tide’ which lines the upper slopes of the Tours of France and Spain each year. These Basque fans hail largely from the lush emerald green regions of northern Spain and south-western France (coloured yellow on the map) where the mild climate and roads empty of traffic make it ideal for riding all year round. And cycling is a way of life here. Known as Euskadi in Basque and Pais Vasco in Spanish, this region is home to some 1,500 cycling clubs and thousands of cyclists. Both Spanish WorldTour teams are based in the region: Euskaltel-Euskadi in Bilbao and Movistar in Navarra (green on map: Nafarroa). Continue reading
The first cycling club in Catalonia, Velocipedic of Barcelona, was founded in 1884 which led to the establishment of the Esport Ciclista Catalan. Nine years later the 400m Bonanova velodrome was built and was regarded as Europe’s finest. There followed the Reus velodrome and then the Lleida velodrome in 1896.
In 1897 the Catalan Cycling Union was set up to govern all cycling activities in the region. 1911 saw the birth of the famous Volta a Catalunya, the third-oldest stage race, after the Tour de France and Giro d’Italia, which now occupies the date in the calendar of another Catalan race, La Setmana Catalana de Ciclismo which started in 1963. The other well-known race from the region was the Escalada a Montjuic which commenced in 1965.
Well, here we are again on the sofa at VeloVoices Towers chatting to Geoffroy Lequatre over an espresso or two. In part one of our interview we talked about Geoffroy’s love of design and his G4 Dimension high-performance clothing range, the highlights of his two years at Team RadioShack and how he coped with and came back from serious injuries.