The 101st Tour de France just completed it’s 8th Stage with a jam packed series of races in the upper regions of the French countryside known as the “Hell of the North.” Rain soaked roads, cobblestones and a few crashes have added to the drama as the sprinters battle it out and the fresh blood of the teams try for stage victories. There have been a few causalities along the way including top sprinter Mark Cavendish (Team OPQS) and last years winner British Rider Chris Froome (Team Sky) both abandoning due to injuries.
Le Tour is just heating up with the general classification of riders set to take off and battle it out for the yellow jersey and eventually the overall tour win.
Le Tour has a tradition of starting the race outside of France with outside cities bidding to host the event. This year race organizes picked England for the first three stages, starting in Yorkshire and ending in London. The reasoning was the recent success of British riders and to be able to compete with the viewers of the World Cup, knowing the UK would draw huge numbers of fans…and they were right,
Here is a video from the Grand Depart (first stage 7/5/14) highlighting the start.
(Due to embedding restrictions-view it here.
Of course real Yorkshire folk say the best way to ride the tour is to trade in those fancy clipless pedals, for clogs:
Following along with a sporting event of this magnitude can be daunting and also a bit boring, I mean not everyone has time to watch hundreds miles of live race coverage or wants to.
For a couple of years now I found it really fascinating to follow along the race using the social media, twitter. It’s an amazing way of combining news articles and sports updates with personal accounts of riders, fans and just about anyone else following along. It’s this great mash-up of information that adds all kinds of dimensions to the scope of an event like this.
For those interested in playing along, the official twitter feed for the Tour is @letour. I use the hastag #TDF and constantly type that into my search.
You can also make your own lists of individual twitter accounts you want to follow and go directly to those list. I made my own Tour de France and added in as many of the teams and riders that I could find.
I’ve included a cheat sheet of all of the 22 teams and 198 riders along with general managers. There is also some basic information about each team along with some fun facts.
9 riders per team for 198 participants
Tour Director: Thierry Gouvenou
ITV cycling @itvcycling
Cycling Fans @cyclingfans
Velo News: @velonews
Team: AG2R LA Mondaile
About Sponsor: AG2R is an insurance and retirement fund group and La Mondaile specializes in estate planning insurance.
UCI Code: ALM
Formerly: Casino-AG2R Prévoyance & AG2R Prévoyance
GM: Vincent Lavenu
Director Sportif: Laurent Biondi
Bikes: Focus @FOCUS_Bikes
Romain Bardet-22 (France) @romainbardet
Mikael Cherel-28 (France) @mikaelcherel
Ben Gastauer-26 (Lux)
Herbert DuPont-32 (France)
Samuel Dumoulin-32 (France) @SamuelDumoulin
Blel Kadri-26 (France)
Sébastien Minard-31 (France)
Matteo Montaguti-30 (Italy)
Jean-Christophe Peraud-36 (France)
Did you know: The iconic French team is the only team to have ridden every edition of Australia’s Tour Down Under since it started in 1999 and is the only team on the WorldTour to ride Focus bikes.
Team: Astana Pro Team
About Sponsor: The state welfare fund of Kazakhstan.
UCI Code: AST
GM: Alexander Vinokourov
Director Sportif: Paolo Slongo
Jakob Fuglsang-29 (Swiss) @Jakob_Fuglsang
Andrei Grivko-30 (Ukraine)
Dimitry Gruzdev-31 (Ukraine)
Vincenco Nibali-29 (Italy) @vincenconibali
Maxim Iglinsky-33 (Kazakhstan)
Tanel Kangret-27 (Estonia)
Michele Scarponi-35 (Italy) @MicheleScarponi
lieuwe Westra-31 (Italy) @lieuwewestra
Alessandro Vanotti-33 (Italy)
Did you know: Astana won the Tour de France with Alberto Contador in 2009 and now has former rider and London Olympic gold medallist Alexander Vinokourov as its general manager.
About Sponsor: international consumer electronics company.
UCI Code: BEL
GM: Richard Plugge @RichardPlugge
Bikes: Bianchi @BianchiOfficial
Lars Boom-29 (Netherlands) @lars_boom
Stef Clement-32 (Netherlands) @Stefclement
Steven Kruijswijk-27 (Netherlands) @s_kruijswijk
Tom Leezer-29 (Netherlands)
Bauke Mollema-28 (Netherlands) @BaukeMollema
Bram Tankink-36 (Netherlands) @bramtankink
Laurens Ten Dam-34 (Netherlands) @laurenstendam
Sep Vanmarcke-26 (Belgium) @sepvanmarcke
Maarten Wynants-32 (Belgium) @wynants82
Did you know: The Dutch team is on the hunt for a new sponsor next year after Belkin recently announced it would finish its support at season’s end.
About Sponsor: Swiss bicycle frame manufacturer owned by Andy Rihs.
UCI Code: BMC
GM: Jim Ochowicz @jimochowicz
Director Spotif: Allan Peiper @AllanPeiper
Bikes: BMC @Ride_BMC
Darwin Atapuma-26 (Columbia) @elPumaDarwin
Daniel Oss-27 (Italy) @Daniel87Oss
Tejay Van Garderen-25 (USA) @Tejayvan
Amael Moinard-31 (France) @amaelmoinard
Marcus Burghardt-30 (Germany) @MBurghardt83
Michael Schär-27 (Switzerland) @michaelschar
Peter Stetina-26 (USA) @peterstetina
Greg van Avermaet-29-(Belgium) @GregVanAvermaet
Peter Velits-29 (Slovakia) @petervelits
Did you know: Cadel Evans won the Tour de France with BMC in 2011 but you won’t see him on the start line this year after he threw everything at trying to win the Giro d’Italia in May.
*TDF 2014 wildcard team
Team: Bretagne-Séché Environnement
About Sponsor: French waste treatment company.
UCI Code: BSE
GM: Emmanuel Hubert @emmanuelhubert3
Director Sportif: Roger Trehin
Jean-Marc Bideau-30 (France) @JMarcBideau
Anthony Delaplace-24 (France) @antodelaplace
Brice Feillu-28 (France) @FEILLUbrice
Romain Feillu-30 (France)
Armindo Fonseca-25 (France) @ArmindoFonseca
Arnaud Gerard-29 (France) @gerard_arno
Florian Guillou-31 (France)
Benoit Jarrier-25 (France) @BenoitJarrier
Florian Vachon-29 (France)
Did you know: Another Pro Continental team granted a wildcard into the field, Bretagne-Seche Environment will make its Tour de France debut this year.
Team Name: Cannondale
About Sponsor: Formerly known as Liquigas now owned by American bicycle manufacturer.
UCI Code: CAN
GM: Roberto Amadio
DS: Stephan Heulot
Bikes: Cannondale @RideCannondale
Peter Sagan-24 (Slovakia) @petosagan
Maciej Bodnar-28 (Poland) @maciejbodnar
Alessandro De Marchi-27 (Italy) @ADM_RossodiBuja
Kristijan Koren-27 (Slovina)
Ted King-31 (USA) @IamTedKing
Fabio Sabatini-29 (Italy)
Jean-Marc Marino-30 (France)
Marco Marcato-30 (Italy) @MarcatoMarco
Elia Viviani-25 (Italy)
Did you know: Cannondale Pro Cycling Team is home to another superstar Slovakian in the making, Matej Mohoric, who won the junior and under-23 world championships in successive years in 2012 and 2013.
*TDF 2014 wildcard team
Team: Cofidis, Solutions-Crédits
About Sponsor: French Money lending busines.
UCI Code: COF
GM: Yvon Sanquer
Bikes: Look @velolook
Rein Taaramae-26 (Estonia)
Luis Angel Mate-29 (Spain) @luisangelmate
Egoitz Garcia-28 (Spain)
Daniel Navarro-30 (Spain)
Nicolas Edet-26 (France)
Cyril Lemoine-31 (France)
Rudy Molard-24 (France) @Rudymolard
Adrien Petit-23 (France) @PetitAdrien62
Julien Simon-28 (France) @juliensimon82
Did you know: Cofidis is a second-tier UCI Pro Continental team and has been granted a wildcard to race the Tour de France.
About Sponsor: Paris based rental car company.
UCI code: EUC
Formerly: Bbox Bouygues Telecom
GM: Jean-René Bernaudeau
Bikes: Colnago @Colnagoworld
Pierre Rolland-27 (France) @pierrerolland
Yukiya Arashiro-29 (Japan) @YukiyaArashiro
Bryan Coquard-22 (France) @bryancoquard
Cyril Gautier-26 (France)
Yohann Gene-33 (France)
Alexandre Pichot-31 (France)
Perriq Quemeneur-30 (France)
Kevin Reza-26 (France) @KevReza
Thomas Voeckler-35 (France) @voecklerthomas
Did you know: Most avid cycling fans will recognise Thomas Voeckler’s face when they see him on TV. Voeckler is renowned for finding his way into a breakaway, which usually results in a solo attack in a last gasp bid for glory. He was supposed to ride the Tour Down Under in Adelaide this year but a collision with a car left him with a broken collarbone.
About Sponsor: French national lottery system:
UCI Code: FDJ
GM: Marc Madiot
Director Sportif: Thierry Bricaud @ThierryBricaud
Thibaut Pinot-24 (France) @ThibautPinot
Arnaud Démare-22 (France) @ArnaudDemare
William Bonnet-32 (France) @willbonnet
Mickaël Delage-28 (France) @mickaeldelage
Arnold Jeannesson-28 (France)
Matthieu Ladagnous-29 (France) @LadagnousMatth
Cédric Pineau-29 (France)
Jérémy Roy-31 (France) @jerenyroy
Arthur Vichot-25 (France) @ArthurVichot
Did you know: Australian Bradley McGee won a stage of the Tour de France in 2002 and wore the yellow jersey in 2003 while riding for FDJ.
About Sponsor: maker of global positioning systems and worldwide electronic manufacturer.
UCI Code: GRS
Formerly: Garmin-Slipstream, Garmin-Transitions & Garmin-Cervélo
GM: Jonathan Vaughters @Vaughters
Bikes: Cervelo @cervelo
Andrew Talansky-25 (USA) @andrewtalansky
Janier Acevedo-28 (Columbia) @AcevedoJanier
Jack Bauer-29 (New Zealand)
Alex Howes-26 (USA) @alex_howes
Benjamin King-25 (USA) @BenKing89
Sebastian Langeveld-29 (Netherlands) @sebaslangeveld
Ramunas Navardauskas-26 (Lithuania) @ramunas88
Tom-Jelte Slagter-25 (Netherlands) @tomjelteslagter
Johan Vansummeren-33 (Belgium)
Did you know: Garmin-Sharp has partnered with global conservation group WWF and has adopted the panda as its unofficial mascot after Irishman Dan Martin was chased by a person in a panda suit as he rode to victory in the 2013 Liege-Bastogne-Liege.
About Sponsor: giant bicycle manufacturer and one of the leading makers of components.
UCI Code: GIA
Formerly: Team Argos-Shimano
Country: the Netherlands
GM: Iwan Spekenbrink @iwanspekenbrink
Bikes: Giant @GiantBicycle
Marcel Kittel-26 (Germany) @marcelkittel
Roy Curvers-34 (Netherlands) @RoyCurvers
Koen de Kort-31 (Netherlands) @koendekort
John Degenkolb-25 (Germany) @johndegenkolb
Dries Devenyns-30 (Belgium) @3sdevenyns
Tom Dumoulin-23 (Netherlands) @tom_dumoulin
Cheng Ji-26 (China) @jicheng369
Albert Timmer-29 (Netherlands) @alberttimmer
Tom Veelers-29 (Netherlands) @tom_veelers
Did you know: Just as dangerous as Kittel is his German teammate John Degenkolb, who this year won Gent-Wevelgem, a stage of Paris-Nice and was second in Paris-Roubaix.
*TDF 2014 wildcard team
Team: IAM Cycling
About Sponsor: IAM investment funds which is a global financial institution and funds management.
UCI Code: IAM
Director Sportif: Marcello Albasini
Bikes: Scott @bikeonscott
Sylvan Chavanel-35 (France) @Chava_Slyvan
Martin Elmiger-35 (Swiss)
Mathais Frank-27 (Swiss)
Heinrich Haussler-30 (Australia)
Roger Kluge-28 (Germany) @kluge_roger
Jerome Pineau-24 (France) @jejeroute44
Sebastien Reichenbach-25 (Swiss) @reichenbach_seb
Marcel Wyss-28 (Swiss) @WyssMarcel
Did you know: IAM Cycling is also home to Australian sprinter Heinrich Haussler, who won the opening stage of Bayern Rundfahrt in May and has good memories of his last Tour de France in which he won an epic Stage 13 with a solo attack in heavy rain.
About Sponsor: global cycling project funded by Russian businesses.
UCI Code: KAT
GM: Viatcheslav Ekimov @eki_ekimov
Director Sportif: Valerio Piva
Bikes: Canyon @Canyon_Bikes
Alexander Kristoff-27 (Norway) @Kristoff87
Joaquim Rodriguez-35 (Spain) @PuritoRodriguez
Joeri Trofimov-33 (Russia)
Egor Silin-26 (Russia) @egsilin
Simon Spilak-28 (Slovania)
Alexander Porsev-28 (Russia)
Luca Paolini-37 (Italy) @llgerva77
Gatis Smukulis-27 (Latvia) @Gsmukulis
Vladimir Isaychev- 28 (Russia)
Did you know: Aussie sprinter Robbie McEwen called Team Katusha home between 2009-2010 and saluted on Australian soil in the Tour Down Under.
About Sponsor: Lampre-Italian sheet metal manufacturer. Merida-Taiwanese bike maker.
UCI Code: LAM
GM: Giuseppe Saronni
Director Sportif: Fabrizio Bontempi
Rui Costa-27 (Portugal) @RuiCostaCyclist
Maximiliano Richeze-31 (Argentina) @MaxRicheze
Jose Serpa-35 (Columbia) @jserpa01
Kristijan Durasek-26 (Croatia)
Sacha Modolo-27 (Italy) @SachaModolo
Davide Cimolai-24 (Italy) @cimo89
Nelson Oliveira-25 (Portugal) @Nelsoliveira89
Chris Horner-42 (USA) @hornerakg
Rafael Valls-27 (Spain)
Did you know: The team has operated under various names but has always retained Lampre as a title sponsor since 1991. This year it has thrown a lifeline to 42-year-old Vuelta a Espana champion Chris Horner.
Team: Lotto Belliso
About Sponsor: Beligian national lottery and Belliso maker of windows.
UCI Code: LTB
Formerly: Omega Pharma-Lotto
GM: Bill Olivier
Director Sportif: Marc Sergeant
Bikes: Ridley @Ridley_Bikes
André Greipel-31(Germany) @AndreGreipel
Adam Hansen-33 (Australia) @HansenAdam
Tony Gallopin-26 (France) @tonygallopin
Jürgen Roelandts-31 (Belgium) @jurgenroelandts
Bart de Clerq-27 (Belgium)
Lars Bak-34 (Denmark)
Greg Henderson-37 (New Zealand) @Greghenderson1
Marcel Sieberg-32 (Germany) @MarcelSieberg
Did you know: Lotto-Belisol’s Aussie hard-man Adam Hansen is set to start his ninth consecutive Grand Tour when he lines up in the Tour de France — a remarkable show of physical and mental strength.
About Sponsor: Spanish mobile telephone communications provider.
UCI Code: MOV
Formerly: Banesto & Caisse d’Epargne
GM: Eusebio Unzue
Bikes: Canyon @Canyon_Bikes
Alejandro Valverde-34 (Spain)
Imanol Eruiti-30 (Spain)
John Gradret-35 (France)
Jesus Herrada-23 (Spain)
Jose Joaquin Rojas
Did you know: Movistar has already produced one Grand Tour winner this season, with Colombian climber Nairo Quintana dominating the Giro d’Italia in May. Quintana, who was second overall in last year’s Tour de France, won’t be on the start line this year but will almost certainly challenge for the yellow jersey in 2015.
*TDF 2014 wildcard team
About Sponsor: NetApp is anAmerican computer and data management company. Endura is a high quality cycling apparel company founded in Scottland.
UCI Code: TNE
GM: Ralph Denk
Director Sportif: Enrico Poitschke
Bikes: Fuji @FujiBikes
Jan Barta-29 (Czech)
David De la Cruz-25 (Spain)@delacruz_sbd
Zakkari Dempster-26 (Australia) @ZakDempster
Leopold König @LeopoldKonig
Tiago Machado @TiagoMachado85
Jośe Mendes @jpcmendes
Paul Voss @paulvoss
Did you know: The team’s roster features Australian Zak Dempster, who was a junior track star and is now making a name for himself on the road.
Team Name: Orica GreenEdge
About Sponsor: Orica is an Australian mining company. Green Edge is a name given to them by owner Gerry Ryan.
UCI Code: OGE
GM: Shayne Bannan @SBannan
Bikes: Scott @bikeonscott
Matt Gross @mattgross1986
Simon Gerrans-(Australia) @simongerrans
Simon Clarke @simoclarke
Luke Durbridge(Australia) @luke_durbridge1
Jens Keukelerie-(Belgium) @jenskeukeleire
Christian Meier-(Canada) @christianmeier
Simon Yates-(UK) @SimonYatess
Did you know: This could well be the last time Orica-GreenEDGE races the Tour de France without a GC contender after director Matt White in May flagged the possibility of recruiting a Grand Tour leader for next year. But for now, the team is happy targeting stage wins as it did successfully on three occasions at the Giro d’Italia in May.
Team: Omega Pharma, Quick-Step
About sponsor: Belgian pharmaceutical company and Quickstep makes laminate flooring.
UCI Code: OPQ
Formerly: Quick Step
GM: Patrick Lefevere @PatLefevere
Director Sportif: Brian Holm
Bikes: Specialized @iamspecialized
Tony Martin-29 (Germany) @tonymartin85
Mark Cavendish-29(UK) @MarkCavendish
Niki Terpstra-30 (Netherlands) @NikiTerpstra
Michal Kwaitkowski-24 (Poland) @michalkwaitkowski
Matteo Trentin-24 (Italy) @MATTEOTRENTIN
Mark Renshaw-31 (Australia) Mark_Renshaw
Jan Bakelants-28 (Belgium) Jan_Bakelants
Michal Golas-30 (Poland) michal_golas
Alessandro Petacchi-40 (Italy) @AlePetacchi
Did you know: Polish rider Michael Kwiatkowski was a revelation at last year’s Tour de France, finishing 11th overall and this year ran top five in all three Ardennes Classics. He will take aim at the white young rider jersey.
Team: Sky Pro Cycling
About Sponsor: British Sky Broadcasting specializing satellites, broadcasting, broadband and telephone systems.
UCI Code: SKY
Country: United Kingdom
GM: Dave Brailsford
Bikes: Pinarello @pinarello.com
Christopher Froome-29 (United Kingdom) @chrisfroome
Bernhard Eisel-33 (Austria) @EiselBernhard
Vasili Kiryienka-33 (Belarus)
David Lopez Garcia-33 (Spain) @dlogar
Mikel Nieve-30 (Spain) @NieveMikel
Danny Pate-35 (USA) @TheDPate
Richie Porte-29 (Australia) @richie_porte
Geraint Thomas-28 (UK) @GeraintThomas86
Xabier Zandio-37 (Spain) @xabizan
Did you know: Froome’s most loyal, trusted and reliable teammate is Tasmanian Richie Porte, who is showing all the hallmarks of a future Grand Tour winner himself. Porte is often the last man standing in front of Froome when the race heats up in the mountains.
Team Name: Tinkoff-Saxo
About Sponsor: Two banks, Tinkoff is Russian and Saxo is from Denmark.
Twitter: @Tinkoff_ Saxo
UCI code: TCS
Formerly: Team Saxo Bank
GM: Bjarne Riis @BjarneRiisTaler
Director Sportif: Nick Gates
Bikes: Specialized @iamspecialized
Alberto Contador-31 (Spain) @albertocontador
Daniele Bennati-33 (Italy)
Jesús Hernández-32 (Spain) @jesushernadez3
Rafal Majka-24 (Poland) @rafalmajka
Michael Mørkøv-29 (Spain) @MichaelMorkov
Nicolas Roche-30 (Ireland) @nicolasroche
Michael Rogers-34 (Australia) @mickrogers
Sérgio Paulinho-34 (Portugal) @sergiompaulinho
Matteo Tosatto-40 (Italy) @Toso_74
Did you know: Team owner and Russian businessman Oleg Tinkov is a passionate cyclist who during the Giro d’Italia would ride many of the stages in full team kit and then eat with the riders at night.
Team: Trek Factory Racing
About sponsor: Trek bike maker.
UCI Code: TFR
Formerly: Leopard Trek, RadioShack-Nissan & RadioShack-Leopard
GM: Luca Guercilena @l_guercilena
Director Sportif: Kim Andersen
Bikes: Trek @TrekBikes
Fabian Cancellara-33 (Swiss) @f_cancellara
Andy Schleck-29 (Luxembourg) @andy_schleck
Frank Schleck-34 (Luxembourg) @schleckfrank
Jens Voigt-42 (Germany) @thejensie
Haimar Zubeldia-37 (Spain) @hzubeldia
Matthew Busche-29 (USA) @MatthewBusche
Markel Irizar-34 (Spain) @Markelizar
Gregory Rast-34 (Swiss) @gregory_rast
Danny van Poppel-20 (Netherlands) @Dannyvanpoppel
Did you know: Andy Schleck won the Tour de France in 2010. Remember him? Well he’s still racing and along with brother Frank (who sat out the 2013 season serving a doping ban) will be attacking in the mountains of this year’s race.