Oakley Provides Invited Media Exclusive Access To 2010 Tour de France

The Corner Before  Château

Once again Oakley provided what many called their best trip ever. From the entertaining bus rides to riding brand new Cervelo’s on the Stage 18 course to a VIP Suite at the finish line on the Champs-Elysee to a private dinner party in le Louvre garden.

Media from around the globe were invited, Australian Men’s Health, North American Wired Magazine, Canadian Cycling, United Kingdom’s GQ and many others, totaling a party of 30 VIPs taking in the last four stages of Tour de France.

Things began in Dax, France where the event kicked off to a fabulous five-course dinner where everyone was able to meet each other and discuss the upcoming events. From there things got interesting as we headed into the rainy roads of France to catch Stage 17 from the Feeding Station area. Although there was rain and no real pub to watch the stage as it closed in on our location, Christian from the Zurich office and Cuan from headquarters were able to line up two viewing areas from local homes and sandwiches for all. With polka dot hats on we watched the riders come storming around the corner of the Feeding Station, which within a few short minutes lead to us heading back inside for shelter to cheer on Andy Schleck and see if he could catch Contador.

Inside a local grocery store’s side room, 30 of us crammed in to catch the final 50km of the race over grilled chicken and fly tape. Some would later say it was their favorite part of the whole week’s events because it was so authentic to being at the Tour de France. Once the race was over we headed back to our hotel in Dax to grab a late dinner with the team and fuel up for our big day on the bikes.

Friday came quickly as an early group headed out to ride 75km of the Stage 18 course, while the rest boarded the bus to meet and ride the remaining 41km to the Feeding Station. It was a gorgeous day on the road as everyone thoroughly enjoyed their brand new Cervelo bikes down the open roads to the finish line of Stage 18. Once we arrived at our destination we were greeted with food, wine and a private viewing area from the Feeding Station. Riders came storming by as we snapped away with our new handheld HD video cameras.

That night we headed to the coast for a quick dip in the ocean and a perfect sunset dinner at a near-by restaurant. Many jokes were shared from the day’s ride through Stage 18 over bottles of wine and great French food.

The following day we headed out to catch the final time trial at a local Château in small vineyard town outside Bordeaux. To say we had a front row seat would be an understatement, check out the photo gallery to see how close we were – those photos with the flash are with a fixed 15mm fisheye on a full frame 5-D Canon.

After Contador passed us we rushed to the bus, then to the train station to catch the last TGV direct train to Paris from Bordeaux. TGV is a great way to travel, make sure to give it a ride the next time you find yourself in France. Once we arrived in Paris we decided to take the subway to our hotel on the Champs-Elysee, which to say the very least was quite hilarious from getting stuck in the turnstiles to watching a private “Speedy Gonzales” puppet show. We checked into the Napoleon Hotel and crashed for the evening after another late night dinner.

Sunday morning we walked the Champs to our private VIP area at the finish line. The media were thrilled beyond belief at the location; food and hospitality the area provided them. And once again we were able to take in another Oakley victory with Mark Cavendish blazing to the finish line in front of the cheering fans. This provided the group with three Oakley stage wins out of the four we watched live.

Things did not end there, all of the top Oakley cyclists stopped by after the closing ceremonies to have a glass of champagne and cheers the end of the 2010 Tour de France from our suite.

Next up was the closing dinner and party, and what better place then le Louvre? We thought so too, thus a dinner and party took place at the museum in all of Paris. Things ended on a high note with a full moon and Eiffel Tower light show for all to take in from the famous grounds.

Big thanks to Oakley Global PR, Oakley Europe and Oakley Sports Marketing for a job well done and to cheers many more Oakley Tour de France Media Events in the future.