Reuters logo
Cycling - Tour demand Bakelants apology for derogatory remark
June 28, 2017 / 7:44 PM / 5 months ago

Cycling - Tour demand Bakelants apology for derogatory remark

DUESSELDORF, Germany (Reuters) - Tour de France organisers will contact Jan Bakelants’s AG2R-La Mondiale team to ask him to apologise after the rider made derogatory comments to a Belgian newspaper about the women who hand out prizes during the race.

Jan Bakelants of Belgium celebrates as he wins the 156 km second stage of the centenary Tour de France cycling race from Bastia to Ajaccio, on the French Mediterranean island of Corsica June 30, 2013. REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier

Bakelants, a Tour de France stage winner in 2013, was quoted as saying by Belgian newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws that he would bring with him a “pack of condoms, because you never know where those podium chicks have been hanging out”.

“We will contact his team so that he makes an apology,” Tour director Christian Prudhomme told Reuters on Wednesday.

Bakelants did not respond to a request for comment from Reuters.

Contacted by Reuters, AG2R-La Mondiale said: “We have seen this interview and the answers of Jan Bakelants, who certainly wanted to be humorous, but in the present case it was very bad taste. We apologise to the organisers and to those who may have been offended by this remark.”

Tour hostesses, or “hotesses du Tour” in French, have long been a feature of major cycling races.

Commonly students, they work long hours hosting sponsors before presenting flowers, prizes and the jerseys riders win for leading the race or a particular category of the race.

Two tour hostesses flank the winning rider on the podium while photographs are taken, often kissing him on the cheek, but other communication between the women and riders is forbidden.

At the 2013 Tour of Flanders, now world champion Peter Sagan apologised after grabbing a women’s bottom on the podium.

Bakelants’s team mate Romain Bardet is one of the favourites for this year’s Tour de France, which runs from July 1-23.

Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Toby Davis and Nick Mulvenney

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
0 : 0
  • narrow-browser-and-phone
  • medium-browser-and-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser
  • wide-browser-and-larger
  • medium-browser-and-landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser-and-larger
  • above-phone
  • portrait-tablet-and-above
  • above-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet-and-above
  • landscape-tablet-and-medium-wide-browser
  • portrait-tablet-and-below
  • landscape-tablet-and-below