A Tour de France organizer joked that the race is starting in Montreal and the Internet ran with it
Turns out there’s more than one city with the namePhoto by: Stephane Boury
Oh Twitter, that wonderful place where nuance and satire is often misunderstood. Stephane Boury, who works for the Amaury Sport Organization (ASO) which runs the Tour de France, posted a joke tweet that the Grand Départ would be taking place in La Belle Province in 2030 and a bunch of cycling websites went with it. Boury’s job is listed as the Commissaire Général responsable des arrivées, so the guy who is in charge of the very complicated logistics for stage finishes.
In the tweet, he tagged both the Tour account, and Canada’s official twitter, and shared the “big news” in French.
“In scouting for the TDF 2030, the Tour is becoming international…4 stages in Canada and then a time trial in Roissy when the riders return to France.”
.@LeTour @Canada 🇨🇦, en repérage pour le TDF 2030, le Tour s'internationalise… 4 étapes au 🇨🇦 et Clm sur les pistes de Roissy 🇨🇵dès le retour des coureurs en France. 😱 pic.twitter.com/fHCkUfDR4b
— Stephane Boury🏁 (@StphaneBoury) November 24, 2022
Accompanying the tweet he posted a photo of a Montreal town sign. The only problem, of course, is there’s another Montreal–in France.
Montreal, France is just west of Carcassonne in the department of Aude.
A Canadian would most likely recognize that the sign doesn’t look like our town signs here, but it was too late. Several cycling and sports sites thought it was real, and that the Tour was headed here.
The concept is not entirely implausible. The Tour started in Denmark in 2022, and often starts in other European countries. The Giro d’Italia, for example, started in Israel in 2018. And let’s not forget that Quebec city did attempt to get the Tour to start there in 2008 to celebrate its 400th anniversary. Although there was a preliminary request, the logistics of flying the entire Tour caravan and also subjecting the athletes and staff to jet lag in a major stage race made it infeasible.
It is not a joke, however, that the road worlds will be starting in Montreal in 2026!
But as far as the Tour goes, that’s a solid non.
As journalist Matthew Mitchell noticed though in the thread below, all sorts of cycling websites decided to write how the Tour may be starting in our home and native land.
When the story appears on CyclingNews/VeloNews/somewhere else later, just note that this isn't a photo of Montreal, Canada but Montreal, France which is near Carcassonne
The 'story' is working its way through the cycling languages… https://t.co/Nx9hiwTkJq pic.twitter.com/oEK95EeHBo
— Mathew Mitchell (@MatMitchell30) November 29, 2022