Dispatches from the Tour de France
A funny and frank account of falling in love with the Tour de France by television's quintessential roving reporter, Ned Boulting.
'Paris, 4 July 2003: My first Tour de France. I had never seen a bike race. I had only vaguely heard of Lance Armstrong. I had no idea what I was doing there. Yet, that day I was broadcasting live on television. I fumbled my way through a few platitudes, before summing up with the words, "...Dave Millar just missing out on the Yellow Jumper." Yes, the Yellow Jumper.'
Follow Ned Boulting's (occasionally excruciating) experiences covering the world's most famous cycling race. His story offers an insider's view of what really goes on behind the scenes of the Tour. From up-close-and-personal encounters with Lance Armstrong to bewildered mishaps with the local cuisine, Ned's been there, done that and got the crumpled-looking t-shirt.
Eight Tours on from Ned's humbling debut, he has grown to respect, mock, adore and crave the race in equal measure. What's more, he has even started to understand it.
Includes How Cav Won the Green Jersey: Short Dispatches from the 2011 Tour de France
“Hugely enjoyable...The only real problem with this book is that it's making me wish away the start of the summer and fast-forward to 2 July and le grand départ”
Helen Pidd, Guardian
“His journey from self confessed 'football hack winging it in a sport beyond his ken' to his initiation into the Tour's nuances and eccentric characters delivers an amusing, warm and easy read”
“A candid, insightful and often hilarious account”
“I thought Ned was an old hand at the Tour. Evidently he was clueless... Told with panache”
“Hugely enjoyable... Brilliant”
Ben East, Metro
“This is, I'd say, the most enjoyable book of its kind since Tim Moore's French Revolutions, and is ideal for filling in the gaps between transmissions from this year's race”
“Quirky, warped, enthusiastic and funny”
“Tour history is blended with anecdotes revealing the personalities and quirks of professional cycling”
Times Higher Educational Supplement
“Made me chuckle”
“Hilarious behind-the-scenes anecdotes”
“An irreverent and funny take on cycling’s biggest race from a man who has seen it up close every year since 2003”
Lesley McDowell, Glasgow Herald
“I found his behind-the-scenes look at the famous race both highly amusing and telling in equal measure”
Johann Lamont, Scotland on Sunday
“Cycling at its best is fiercely cosmopolitan and internationalist, Boulting provides the kind of commentary the sport deserves, and will need if it is to fulfil its undoubted potential to reach out and grow”
Mark Perryman, The Huffington Post