Mind you, that year the organisers accidently played the Danish instead of the Spanish national anthem. The French are masters at the subtle put-down. Delgado got the wrong anthem in 1988 Tour.
No such worries for Cadel:
A Paris based Tina Arena stepped up to the podium and performed an impromptu a capella version of Advance Australia Fair after ringing the officials for permission that morning.
The first time that a national anthem has been performed on the podium; and the first time that the winner has been drapped in a national flag. You’d have thought that at such a tradition seeped event, eye-brows would be raised, but no, it was all feel good.
Jens gets the final words:
“Well friends, to be honest with you, I’m feeling pretty drunk. I have just drunk five beers in about an hour since finishing my time trial and have barely eaten all day. And I just rode the Tour de France don’t forget!
But let me tell you, this day got off to a weird start because for a while I thought I was actually going to miss the start of my time trial. Last night we slept up on Alpe d’Huez and today it took us two hours and 35 minutes to drive down to Grenoble.
Now I have driven off the Alpe many times. There is always traffic. But I have never seen anything like this! Our driver was taking all kinds of chances, trying to get us to the start on time. I had to put my number and my skinsuit on in the car. And once we finally arrived, I had exactly two minutes and 25 seconds to warm up! Oh those last 10 kilometers were hurting!
…. But you have to give respect to Cadel. He is a very strong rider. He was consistent the whole Tour, and he really took control in the last two days in the mountains. And then today, he rode a super strong time trial and really put his mark on the race. He won fair and square. I’m happy for him too.”