Wednesday 21 September 2011

One Day One Photo - 13

I just want to big up Jens Voigt. I saw him at the departure village in Creteil this summer, on the last stage of the Tour de France. Everyone was crowded round the team buses trying to get to speak to Cadel Evans, Thomas Voeckler or Jens's Leopard-Trek team mates. While Messrs Schlek and Cancellara were jiving around in their bus listening to Michael Jackson songs The Jensie was on a bench on a grass verge being interviewed by a German film crew. He wasn't exactly hiding from anyone. It's just that hardly anyone thought to look at that unassuming piece of grass verge round the side of a council estate block in the suburbs of Paris! So a handful of us were able to walk right up to old Jens and chat to him, get his autograph, pose for photos etc. I'm not a massive groupie so I'm not fussed about being photographed with a famous person - unless asked to do so, or unless they are a friend of mine. If the person autographed a programme or a card for me, I'd probably end up losing it as I'm not good at keeping those sorts of things. I was just happy to smile at him, say hello, shake hands and ask him about his tour. Perhaps I regret not having had my tape with me. That would have made for a good interview. I was quite pleased to hear he'd be in the UK for the Tour of Britain. But sadly, it wasn't to be - the British roads got the better of him. So it'll have to be another time before I am graced with his presence. Why do I like Jensie most out of the peloton? Nothing to do with his looks, his cycling ability, his spirited mentality. No, quite simply because he's touching 40 years of age and is doing a great job representing my generation. When I think I'm over the hill, and too old to be falling over or putting my body through the mill I look at Jens Voigt throwing himself down a ditch, or crossing the finishing line beaten up and bruised, and think - you're doing a great job, mate! Fingers crossed he does the Tour de France next year.

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