Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Le Domestique

Cycling is a team sport.

Although it's true that only one man can wear the Maillot Jaune on the Champs-Élysées, it is never a solo journey. Behind every Tour de France champion (or, more frequently, one wheel in front of him) is a long-suffering domestique. These guys know that they will never compete for overall honours, yet they work tirelessly to give the team leader the best possible opportunity to work his magic.

On rare occasions, when the race situation permits, a lowly domestique will be given permission to join a (probably-futile) breakaway and race not for his team leader, but for his own individual glory. For me, today is one of those days.

I'm Tom, Mark's faithful teammate and the scribe of this blog:

Lover of wine, cheese and cycling
I've been a cycling fan for a number of years and over that time I've been lucky enough to spend several fun weeks touring around the countryside on a bicycle.

For the last three years in a row, in April, I've spent a week riding 1,000km through country South Australia as part of SuperCycle, a charity event that this year alone raised over $445,000 to build accommodation for rural and regional cancer patients who need to travel to Adelaide for treatment.

Leading the peloton around a corner on SuperCycle 2013
I love cycling so much I convinced my wife to spend our honeymoon cycling 900km around New Zealand's South Island.

There were some long days on the bike...
...but we weren't exactly roughing it.
As a seasoned cycle-tourist I'm very excited at the prospect that Mark and I could be covering the Tour de France for CyclingTips. It's been a pipe dream for several years to visit France in July but the stars have never aligned. Perhaps this year will be the year.

Now as the finish line draws close and the peloton bears down on today's breakaway, only time will tell whether a stage win will be mine. Until then, and always, keep pedalling!



  1. You forgot to write about your own super domestique skills Tom. Didn't you end up hauling all gear for the team captain?

    1. Well yes, I did carry my team captain's panniers up a few hills in New Zealand (as every good domestique knows: happy wife = happy life). But we don't want to give Mark any ideas about me carrying his camera and tripod up l'Alpe d'Huez if we happen to win, now do we?