'Go Jonas!' - A day at the Tour de France with Jonas Vingegaard's parents

Cycling Weekly joins Jonas Vingegaard's parents on the roadside in the Pyrenees to watch their son in action on stage five of the French Grand Tour

Jonas Vingegaard's father, Claus, cheers him in from the roadside in the Pyrenees
(Image credit: Tariq Mikkel Khan / Ekstra Bladet)

This feature originally appeared in the 13 July 2023 issue of Cycling Weekly magazine

"He's doing it again," says Karina Vingegaard with tears rolling down her cheeks as she clasps her head in her hands. Karina and I, along with her husband, Claus, have just watched their son Jonas hurtle past us as he thunders down the valley road towards Laruns, putting serious time into his rival Tadej Pogačar as he attempts to defend the Tour de France title.

For me, for you, stage five was part of a journey that had begun less than a week ago. Or maybe, a journey that began a year ago when Vingegaard won his first Tour so emphatically. But Karina’s moistened cheeks are a stark reminder that for her it’s a journey that started well over a decade ago. It’s impossible not to be moved by it.

Moments ago we sat quietly around their iPad screen enjoying an afternoon drink together as we watched the race unfold. Now the two people that had been calm, collected and relaxed a moment ago are leaping up and down and cheering.

“Go Jonas!” they both scream at the top of their lungs as their son speeds past within arm’s length in a blur of Jumbo-Visma yellow and black.

“This is very, very good right now,” says Claus as he punches the air with delight. He sips a celebratory cold lager, a huge smile spreading across his face as he turns back to the road to watch more riders tear past.

Just as they did last summer, Claus and Karina have travelled over from Thy in northern Denmark to follow Jonas’ journey from Bilbao to Paris. Minutes earlier Jonas had launched his attack on the Col de Marie-Blanque, quickly pulling away from Pogačar and chasing down virtual race leader Jai Hindley.

Both Claus and Karina then sit and lean towards the screen, absolutely transfixed by what’s going on a few miles up the road.

On the road in Laruns

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Tom Thewlis

Tom has been writing for Cycling Weekly since 2022 and his news stories, rider interviews and features appear both online and in the magazine. 

Since joining the team, he has reported from some of professional cycling's biggest races and events including the Tour de France and the World Championships in Glasgow. He has also covered races elsewhere across the world. 

As well as on the ground reporting, Tom writes race reports from the men's and women's WorldTour and helps with coverage of UK domestic cycling.