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Alpecin-Fenix pay tribute to Raymond Poulidor at Tour de France team presentation

Will Strickson
25 Jun 2021

As star man Mathieu van der Poel makes his Tour debut, the team pays tribute to his grandfather with special kit for team presentation

Mathieu van der Poel and his Alpecin-Fenix team paid tribute to his grandfather, the legendary Raymond Poulidor, with a one-off kit on display at the Tour de France team presentation yesterday and on a retro photoshoot.

The purple and yellow team jersey celebrates Poulidor's Mercier team colours, and Van der Poel even recreated some of Poupou's poses next to an old school Peugeot.

 

As Van der Poel lines up for his first Tour de France 45 years on from his grandfather's last, he hopes to honour the  family legacy by doing something Poulidor, the eternal second, never could: wear the yellow jersey.

Despite completing 14 Tours de France, eight of which he finished on the podium, French hero Poulidor never donned the maillot jaune for a single day.

Van der Poel's Alpecin-Fenix team are saying 'Merci Poupou' and wearing this special jersey to celebrate the great man, who passed away in 2019, with a replica jersey, cap, t-shirts and rider cards on sale to raise money for charities supporting kids chasing their sporting dreams.

'My grandfather recognised my joy of cycling early on and he always said that David and I were more talented than he was,' Van der Poel said. 'Today, I wish he could be there and experience this moment together with our family. He dreamed of this for a long time, but I am sure he is proud as he always was.

'I'm delighted that we can pay an ultimate tribute to him in such an exciting way and that we will be able to say all together: "Merci Poupou".'

Of course this now means there is zero doubt that Van der Poel will win Saturday's opening stage into Landerneau. For more information, to say 'Merci Poupou' yourself and to buy the replica kit, visit mercipoupou.com