Pidcock has incredible bike handling skills which allows him to take more risks than the other riders in the peloton. (Photo: Ineos Grenadiers)
Beginner Tom Pidcock won stage 12 of the Tour de France with an early performance on an iconic mountain on Thursday.
Here, AFP takes a look at five things to know about the 22-year-old from Leeds. Who is an incredibly versatile rider, capable of incredible feats on road bikes, mountain bikes and cyclocross.
Pidcock won gold in the mountain bike category at the Tokyo 2020 Games and wears a olympic rings tattoo on his wrist.
He has also been the cyclo-cross world champion since January 2022. “I would put this victory as the second best victory, behind the Olympics, but ahead of cyclo-cross,” said the Yorkshireman at the finish line.
Like a true Yorkshireman, Pidcock is very comfortable in the mud. (Bartek Wolinski/Red Bull Content Pool)
Muddy school uniform
After a daredevil descent which will go down in the history of the Tour de France for its beauty and cold braverythe Tour rookie explained that he had perfected his manipulative skills go to school on horseback.
“I went to school and back on my bike every day and took a shortcut through the woods and the mud and obviously had my uniform completely covered in mud the whole time,” said he said after his victory on Thursday. “I’m used to being on the edge of control.”
When other road riding pros get nervous in wet conditions, Pidcock relies on his inventory of mountain bike skills. (Bartek Wolinski/Red Bull Content Pool)
Veteran CEO of Ineos Geraint Thomas said his team-mate was “very young and it shows just by talking to him”. But Pidcock isn’t letting the youngsters hold him back.
“I won a stage on the Tour now, and I’m satisfied. I mean, I learned a lot but after that, I have bigger ambitions in this race for the future. That’s for sure. “
Like that other Tour de France icon, Peter Sagan, Pidcock is an extremely capable mountain biker. (Bartek Wolinski/Red Bull Content Pool)
Pidcock continues to win. He has several major youth level honors such as Paris-Roubaix Juniors and the U23 road race world title. He exudes confidence and does not hesitate to express it.
“Okay, I’m here to learn but I’m comparing myself to Wout and Pogacar,” he said of world No. 1 one-day runner Wout van Aert and doubles Tadej Pogacar. reigning champion of the Tour de France.
Tom Pidcock at the UCI XCO in Nove Mesto na Morave, Czech Republic. In his signature red glasses. (Bartek Wolinski/Red Bull Content Pool)
lucky red glasses
Pidcock often celebrates victories by crossing the finish line lying in his saddle with a clenched fist outstretched in a Superman pose. On Friday, he was too exhausted after almost five hours of racing.
He also said he avoided paying for another one of his victory tricks: throwing his wraparound sunglasses into the crowd, which he recently regretted after losing a pair he loved. “I put my lucky red glasses back on today so I knew nothing could go wrong,” he said.