For the first time, the Tour de France changes the protocol and promises a man and a woman to put the shirts back on the goal podiums and put an end to the traditional “miss”, a practice that is considered sexist, announced its director Christian Prudhomme, during a press conference on Wednesday in Nice.
A hostess and a host at the Tour de France. The famous cycling competition will change its protocol for the first time to put an end to a practice that is considered sexist. Instead of the traditional “miss”, a man and a woman will put the jerseys back on the podium, Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme announced on Wednesday, August 19, at a point in time during a press conference on the health instructions for the start of Grande Boucle in Nice, 29 August.
“You used to see the champion surrounded by two hostesses, with five chosen on one side and five representatives of the partners on the other. There it will be different with only one chosen and one representative of the yellow shirt, as well as a hostess and a host of for the first time, ”he said at a press conference.
“Yes, it’s new but we’ve already done it in other competitions in 20 years, like in Liège-Bastogne-Liège,” organized as the Tour de France by the Amaury Sport Organization (ASO), added Christian Prudhomme.
Women “are not objects, no rewards”
In 2018, another first class organized by ASO, Flèche Wallonne, had chosen a mixed podium, a man to reward the winner and a woman for the winner.
Christian Prudhomme did not say whether he stopped the tradition of “kissing” the winner, but health contacts seem to have improved by this second decried practice nonetheless.
For several years, voices have been raised regularly to demand the end of podium hostesses. A 2019 petition even garnered nearly 38,000 signatures, believing that women “are not objects, not rewards.”
Formula 1 had ceased in 2018 for the “grid girls”, these young women, chosen for their plastic, which indicates the location of the single seats.
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“Common sense” of “wearing a mask”
Christian Prudhomme also urged onlookers in the streets to wear a mask under the Grande Boucle: a matter of “common sense” in the face of increasing coronavirus cases.
“For the spectators, on the road, there is clearly no question to ask. I love the bike, I love the Tour, common sense indicates that you must wear the mask, even if the formal obligation to do so depends on the head of the 32 crossed departments, says Christian Prudhomme.
At the last Critérium du Dauphiné, also organized by the ASO and which crossed five departments, four prefects out of five had already taken such a measure.
Because if the organizers have the opportunity to control the wearing of the mask and respect for the barrier gestures at departures and arrivals, the operation is more complex on the road and does not depend on them.
During the summer’s various cycling events, the riders have regularly expressed their concern about the subject. “People do not realize that when they will shout at 40 centimeters to encourage us, there is a risk,” for example, a few days ago, Julien Bernard (Trek) on the Route d’Occitanie estimated.
The dark scenario for the organizers would be that a case of Covid-19 is detected in the peloton.