Lachlan Morton is riding the Tour de France solo and hoping to arrive in Paris before the peloton.
The EF Education - Nippo pro is riding all stages and transfers of the 2021 French Grand Tour, aiming to reach the French capital before his EF Education - Nippo team-mates and the rest of the peloton on Sunday July 18.
The Australian, who has become known for his outlandish endurance efforts while also riding in the WorldTour, set off from Brest on stage one an hour after the race, and on the morning of the stage two was already past the second start line as the peloton were having their breakfast.
KM 255 - Lachlan crossed the line of stage 1 three and a half hours after the peloton. While the Tour riders went up to their rooms for dinner, Lachlan powered on, riding to the start of stage 2 in Perros-Guirec (89-kilometers). There’s no telling when he will stop…📷: @rapha pic.twitter.com/MqlRNqZSLNJune 26, 2021
The 2021 race will cover more than 3,300km, but Morton will ride 5,500km, riding from the finish line of one stage to the start of the next. In order to give himself the best chance of making it to Paris first, with the peloton set to fly from Bordeaux in the southwest of the country to the capital after the conclusion of the penultimate stage 20.
The 29-year-old will also ride on rest days, telling the Guardian (opens in new tab) he will attempt to ride mostly during daylight as there's less to distract the mind during night-time pedalling.
“We thought about doing it last year during the Giro, but in the end I had to ride the race,” Morton said.
“We kept throwing the idea around and then thought about doing it during the Tour. It’s a celebration of the original Tour and what it was all about to begin with. I realised it was going to be a huge undertaking. I’m not even sure if it’s possible."
Morton's nod to the Tour is a reminder of when participants would have to fix their own bikes en route, raced through the night and slept in fields, and he will also be bivvying on the side of the road in between café stops to resupply.
Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
Join now for unlimited access
Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Hi. I'm Cycling Weekly's Weekend Editor. I like writing offbeat features and eating too much bread when working out on the road at bike races.
Before joining Cycling Weekly I worked at The Tab and I've also written for Vice, Time Out, and worked freelance for The Telegraph (I know, but I needed the money at the time so let me live).
I also worked for ITV Cycling between 2011-2018 on their Tour de France and Vuelta a España coverage. Sometimes I'd be helping the producers make the programme and other times I'd be getting the lunches. Just in case you were wondering - Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen had the same ham sandwich every day, it was great.
Pushing beyond the norm: new Red Bull film chronicles Justin Williams' journey in cycling
After feeling like an outsider in Europe, Justin Williams formed the first all-Black cycling team.
By Anne-Marije Rook • Published
Beloved frame builder Dillen Maurer loses foot in accident
Characteristically, Maurer offered first responders a free bike once he gets the hang of using a prosthetic.
By Anne-Marije Rook • Published