Cadel Evans. The only lion that matters.

//Cadel Evans. The only lion that matters.

Cadel Evans. The only lion that matters.

Lion, BMC, bus.

There is only one lion on the dash on the BMC team bus and it’s also the ultimate lion, the lion d’authorite, the one lion that matters in France, in Paris, on the final day of the 2011 Tour de France.

The winning lion.

It’s the Credit Lyonnais lion that Cadel won for taking over the yellow jersey thanks to his masterful ride in the time trial. He took second place behind HTC-Highroad clock specialists Tony Martin but that hardly mattered.

It was the day and the bear when he won the Tour de France after years of bad luck, injuries, weak supporting casts and an unbeatable Alberto Contador.

That is all over now and that lion is one beautiful, iconic, stuffed creature. Cadel Evans may not stick that lion on his fireplace mantle — if he has one — but he will always look at the silly lion and remember the most important day in his cycling career.

The day he won la Grand Boucle, the Tour de France, the crowning achievement in the sport of cycling.

Walk by the Europcar team bus and there are ten lions on the dash. That pack of lions isn’t worth jack compared to the big one on the BMC dash.

The lion that won belongs to Cadel Evans.

By |2019-02-03T16:16:13-08:00July 24th, 2011|Uncategorized|8 Comments

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  1. beth July 24, 2011 at 5:27 pm - Reply

    Pardon my denseness here, but are you saying that the lion given on the final day is visibly different in someway? Like bigger or something? I have wondered if they have some way of distinguishing it from the previous ones. BTW, I have recently discovered, after several years, that there is an L in Euskaltel. Who knew?

    • TwistedSpoke July 27, 2011 at 2:55 pm - Reply

      Beth, I think all the lions are the same although if you're French, they stick a little piece of chocolate inside with the stuffing. Matt

  2. Jason Crawford July 24, 2011 at 7:03 pm - Reply

    I don't agree with your comment "Walk by the Europcar team bus and there are ten lions on the dash. That pack of lions isn’t worth jack compared to the big one on the BMC dash."

    For a new team (Ok reincarnation of other french teams) the results that Thomas Voekler provided for his team were beyond expectations. From a sporting standpoint, the team performed beyond expectations and fought to the death to help Thomas hold his lead over several days.

    From a sponsorship standpoint the team was purely build around Voekler and wouldn't have existed if he would have gone to another team. Europcar took a chance on funding the team and was hansomely rewarded with a huge amount of publicity (all for good reasons).

    So while T.V. and Europcar didn't keep the yellow Jersey all the way to Paris, your comment is completely wrong..or as Voekler would say "foutu".

    • Heidi Marie Moser July 24, 2011 at 9:35 pm - Reply

      I agree with Jason. Those ten lions are worth a lot more than "jack" no matter what you compare them with! How many cyclists/teams can boast of so many yellow jerseys?? Many professionals dream to have yellow for ONE day in le TdF, let alone ten days! No one expected Europcar to perform the way that they did this year. Chapeau to Thomas Voeckler and his team!

      • Higgins July 25, 2011 at 1:39 am

        But for sure, if Thomas Voeckler were given the chance, he would gladly swap those ten lions for the one held by Cadel Evans. Chapeau to Thomas for a great ride, but in the end Evans has taken a place in history that no amount of stage wins can match.

    • TwistedSpoke July 27, 2011 at 2:57 pm - Reply

      Jason, it's my blog so in that respect I am never, ever wrong. I think the point I was making is that I'm sure Voeckler would trade nine of those for a Tour victory and so would Europcar. They had a fantastic tour. Matt

  3. IdeaStormer Jorge July 26, 2011 at 9:47 pm - Reply

    All those plushy lions are worth A LOT!

    Any rider winning one is guaranteed major mula! First in post Tour crit's and then in next year's contract! I would bet one lion won on any stage is worth at least a 100K pay raise in the coming year, add 10 of them and maybe not 10x100K but at least several 100K!

    The last one has an added bonus I do agree, but we have also seen that some riders do fail to cash in on that last lion for some odd reason or another. (cough cough, Sastre)

    • TwistedSpoke July 28, 2011 at 6:41 am - Reply

      All lions are extremely valuable, I agree. But that one for winning the Tour is the sweetest of all. Matt

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