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7 Exciting Facts About the Tour de France, and Where to Stream the Race
Lasting nearly three weeks and involving several hundred competitors, the Tour de France is one of the biggest sporting events across the globe — and in the world of cycling, it’s definitely the biggest. This much-anticipated annual race faced some setbacks during the COVID-19 pandemic, and while the world hasn’t returned to normal yet, devoted cycling fans (and those of us who simply love edge-of-our-seats competition) are eager for the big return slated for this summer.
In honor of the Tour de France’s grand 2021 re-entry to the sporting universe on Saturday, June 26, we’re taking a look at some fun facts that’ll get your anticipation building even more. Plus, you’ll discover where and how you can watch every minute of the race from the comfort of home — no cleats or helmet necessary.
Thousands of People Are Involved
You might already know that a bevy of bicyclists participate in the race — 198 riders spread across 22 different teams compete each year. But the number of people involved in ensuring the race goes off without a hitch is much higher than the number of athletes participating. Organizers take logistics to the next level with team staff members, members of the race jury, thousands of security professionals and members of the media. If you include the spectators in that count, the numbers — pre-pandemic, at least — can run into the millions . From city to city along the race route, hundreds upon hundreds of people follow the action throughout the course of the event. And organizers and support staff keep things running smoothly to the finish line.
The Race Has a Surprising Connection to a Newspaper
The first Tour de France wasn’t held because a bunch of bicycling fans got together and thought it’d be a great idea to start a competition — at least not totally. It was actually a promotional event hosted with the intention of bringing more publicity to L’Auto , a French newspaper that focused on reporting details about different sporting events. Although L’Auto has since closed down, the parent company of its replacement, L’Equipe , continues to organize the Tour de France today.
It’s Not Just Big, but Also Long
And it’s long in multiple ways, too. The race itself takes place over the course of nearly a month, with 21 different day-long segments making up the bulk of the competition. The length of the course is also extensive, however; it’s typically over 2,000 miles long and can pass through multiple neighboring countries. It wasn’t even always this short, either — in 1926, the course encompassed a winding 3,570 miles and took a full month for riders to finish.
Different Jerseys Mean Different Things
As you watch the race, you’ll notice cyclists wearing the bright kits and bibs that represent their teams — but you’ll also spot some even more unique colors and designs among the pack. One of these is a yellow jersey, called the “maillot jaune,” that’s bestowed upon the racer who had the lowest cumulative ride time for the day. Other special jerseys include the green “maillot vert,” which is awarded to the rider with the most points, and the “maillot a pois” — a red and white polka-dotted jersey given to the cyclist who earns the most points during the areas of the course that have steep inclines to climb. The rider who wears the maillot a pois is affectionately known as “the king of the mountain.”
There Was Almost Only One Tour de France
The first Tour de France took place in 1903 – and that was almost the one and only iteration of the race. That’s because newspaper editor Henri Desgrange, who helped organize the initial tour, was so aghast at the conduct not only of the fans but also of the competitors in the 1903 race that he wanted to discontinue it despite its clear appeal. Boisterous crowds turned violent, with spectators assaulting racers as they passed along the course. The riders themselves found numerous ways to cheat, disqualifying themselves in the process. But the Tour de France was so lauded — and it increased circulation of L’Auto so extensively — that the organizers had no choice but to continue hosting the event.
The Race Has Its Own Language
Bonking, anyone? As you’re watching the Tour de France, you might hear commentators use some curious turns of phrase — and many of them will be unique to the race itself. Boost your bicycling know-how by learning what these terms mean before catching one of the race segments:
- Bonking: Cyclists don’t want to “bonk” during this race; it means they’ve run out of energy and are too wiped to continue.
- Peloton: No, it’s not the fancy exercise bike you bought during the pandemic. In Tour de France context, a peloton is the main group of riders where most of the participants are cycling together.
- Sag Wagon: If someone bonks, they may need the assistance of the sag wagon. This is a car that follows the pack of cyclists and picks up those who become too fatigued or injured to keep riding.
- Musket Bag: While it may sound like something you’d find at a Civil War battleground, a musket bag is sort of like a bagged lunch — but it’s packed with energy gels, water, sandwiches and other fuel for the cyclists. It’s also called a “musette” or, sometimes, a “bonk bag.”
- Lanterne Rouge: In French, this term means “red light,” and it refers to the cyclist who’s in the very last place in the race. Being in this position gets riders ample attention, and those who know they won’t win sometimes compete for this distinction instead.
You Can Watch the Action at Home — Here’s How
Now that the race has returned to regularly scheduled programming in 2021 following its 2020 pandemic postponement, you might be eager to catch the three-week racing saga unfold from the comfort of home. Fortunately, you have the convenient option to stream the tour live on both NBC Sports and NBC’s Peacock streaming service.
The race coverage on Peacock is only available through Peacock Premium, a paid tier of the service that costs $4.99 — a worthwhile investment if you’re a serious cycling fan who can’t wait to watch this Grand Tour. NBC Sports is accessible if you’re already paying for regular cable, but without that subscription you won’t be able to stream the program online or watch it on TV unless you spring for Peacock.
Keep in mind that, if you’re not already a Peacock subscriber, you’ll receive a free weeklong trial to better help you determine if the service is right for you. You can use that to catch up on the race and decide if you want to make the month-long (or longer) investment.
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Madonna: MDNA World Tour
Madonna: MDNA World Tour streaming: where to watch online?
You can buy "Madonna: MDNA World Tour" on Apple TV, Amazon Video as download or rent it on Amazon Video online.
The MDNA Tour was the ninth concert tour by Madonna. Madonna had embarked on The MDNA Tour for promotion of her twelfth studio album MDNA. The performances at the American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida during the North American leg of The MDNA Tour were documented for video release. Madonna described the tour as "the journey of a soul from darkness to light". The tour was a commercial success although it courted a number of controversies. It was dubbed as the highest-grossing tour of 2012 by Billboard. Become the tenth highest-grossing tour of all time and overcome Celine Dion's Taking Chances Tour as the second highest-grossing tour among female artists, behind Madonna's own Sticky & Sweet Tour.
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Madonna, MDNA Tour
A fresh and striking production.
Following an acclaimed contribution to Madonna’s NFL Super Bowl XLVI Halftime Show, the ‘Queen of Pop’ invited Moment Factory to create multimedia content for her 2012 MDNA world tour. We wanted to tell a story that was striking and fresh but also recognizable as the Madonna fans know and love.
A challenge we often face with opportunities like the MDNA tour is developing content for an innovative set design on a short production schedule. In this case, a set of 36 LED-flanked motorized cubes moved during the performance to create a constantly evolving visual environment. Working with new stage technology means we need extra time to adjust how our video looks and moves on the design, which is often being fine-tuned even as we produce content. To get us to the launch, a team of more than 20 artists worked non-stop for four months to create an immersive experience for 12 songs, including coordinating production and video shoots around the world.
The artists at Moment Factory developed content that would bring the MDNA set to its full potential, crafting visual universes that intensify the story, drama, and emotion of each song. One of our favourite songs to work on was “I’m A Sinner,” featuring a psychedelic train ride through India. A consummate artist, Madonna was involved in every detail of the production. With her intuition and us doing what we do best, together we forged the ultimate aesthetic to deliver her album’s message.
INFINITE CONTENT TOUR, ARCADE FIRE
Billie eilish - where do we go the livestream, childish gambino, this is america tour, we do it in public.
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Madonna: The MDNA Tour
Madonna returns to stadiums and arenas for her ninth tour, and the highest grossing tour of 2012. Madonna returns to stadiums and arenas for her ninth tour, and the highest grossing tour of 2012. Madonna returns to stadiums and arenas for her ninth tour, and the highest grossing tour of 2012.
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- Trivia The "Express Yourself" performance also contains elements from the song "Born This Way" (2011) by Lady Gaga . Its use is not mentioned in the final credits.
- Goofs During the "Turn Up the Radio" sequence, Madonna's wardrobe changes continuously between shots - going from a leather-type jacket to a sleeveless, fur-collared ensemble and back, again. The sequence was apparently stitched together from various performances at different venues.
- Connections Features Le Samouraï (1967)
- Soundtracks Girl Gone Wild Written by Madonna , Jenson Vaughan , Alessandro 'Alle' Benassi and Benny Benassi Performed by Madonna Contains elements from "Material Girl" Written by Robert Rans and Peter H. Brown Contains elements from "Give It 2 Me" Written by Madonna and Pharrell Williams
- Runtime 2 hours
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