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Tour de Celeb series finale -here's our verdict, how was it for you?

Our man Big Dave has the remote control as the stars take on L'Etape du Tour...

It was the season finale of the Channel 5 reality TV show Tour de Celeb on Monday, which saw the eight contestants take on July's Etape du Tour in the French Alps.

> Tour de Celeb concludes as stars ride L'Etape

Our man Big Dave Atkinson was in charge of the remote control for the evening, as well as the Twitter account. Here's his verdict - let us know what you think in the comments below and if you missed the series you can catch it all here.

Well, they all made it.

If you were being uncharitable you might point to the fact that the Etape was shortened and the broom wagon cut-off reasonably generous; that worked in Louie Spence’s favour and also that of Hugo Taylor, who spent 45 minutes sitting by the side of the road because he didn’t know how to fix a puncture. Fail to plan, etc and so on.

But credit where credit’s due: everyone got round on a hot day that still included three significant climbs, including the Joux Plane which is generally considered to be no fun at all.

Louie tried to shorten it by walking directly up between the hairpins at one point, but in reality – and indeed on reality TV – that’s probably not any easier.

Who was the star?

Well, Austin Healey smashed round in well under five hours, which is impressive, but he’s not exactly a stranger to two wheels.

Amy Williams, who we bumped into a few times while training around Bath before the Etape this year, knocked the 122km off in a very solid six and a half hours.

And on the subject of very solid things Darren Gough, who’s definitely not built for the hills, came home about an hour after that. That was probably the standout ride of the eight. Jodie Kidd struggled with mechanical issues on her Dassi bike, but made it round well within time.

Lucy Mecklenburgh spent the days before the Etape descending like Bambi crossing the frozen pond and didn’t look comfortable with the crowds, and Angelica Bell stuck to her game plan of walking the steep bits and still managed to make it home in plenty of time.

In the end the blue team of Williams, Gough, Spence and Mecklenburgh edged out the reds by nine minutes, with Taylor’s 45-minute puncture siesta more than the difference between the two.

But in the end the Etape is a personal battle and all eight can be proud that they made it to the finish line; thousands every year don’t.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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philly | 7 years ago
1 like

It was made by Louie Spence camping it up- I thought he was gonna be a nightmare but he made a boring bunch of Z listers way more bareable.

Absolutley crying at that sequence with Alex Dowsett

Fair play to all of them for finishing. Chapeau laugh

peted76 | 7 years ago
1 like

Loads of really annoying things bugged me about the show, incude but not limited to:

Angelica's helmet position / the disparagy of Austin who would shame most readers on this site / The lack of actual support given by the team, such as posh bloke not being able to change a tube /  Angelica not being taught how to ride with cleats and ride up a hill / Louis' head should have been addressed as they did the model lady / Jodie's mechanical issues (seriously shoddy wtf!!) every cyclist knows to have their bikes checked over thoroughly before a big ride like that and then on the etape, no one appeared to jump out and 'fix/adjust/fettle/help her.. 

.. but like a guilty pleasure, I loved it, Angelica made me despair, Louis made me laugh out loud, Gough made me wince when he got leathered the night before a ride and I now really fancy Amy Williams, she's ace!

PaulBox | 7 years ago

Thought it was a pretty good series, coaching not up to a very good standard and some of the dangers were a little too sensationalised for my liking, but that's reality tv I suppose. Generally impressed that they all managed to complete the course but not ensuring that they could all fix a puncture was pretty shit.

antonio | 7 years ago
1 like

The progamme ticked all my memory boxes from sixty odd years, the highs, the lows and pure enjoyment. I enjoyed it very much. 


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