Two weeks after a triumphant return to Le Mans, Ford is hoping to celebrate another 50th anniversary of a victory in France … at the Tour de France.
Back in 1966, the Ford GT40 took victory at the classic 24-hour race and celebrated it this year when the Ford GT (the spiritual successor of the classic racing car) raced to GT victory at the twice-around-the-clock event.
But in 1966, Ford also sponsored a team in the Tour de France, and helped Lucien Aimar finish in Paris with the yellow jersey, accompanied by his Ford France-Hutchinson cycling team. Ford will this year support the powerhouse Team Sky in the 3-week, 21-stage 3,519-km grand tour around France, and its lead rider, defending champion Chris Froome. Team Sky riders have won the Tour De France three times in the past four years (Bradley Wiggins in 2012, and Froome in 2013 and 2015).
The blue oval will be supporting the racers with a selection of its latest models, including the Mondeo and S-Max wagons, Edge and Kuga crossovers, Transit Custom van and a Mustang.
Ford is also supporting a new women’s cycling team in the British Cycling Women’s Road Series, again providing support vehicles such as the Mondeo liftback sedan, Transit Custom and the EcoSport compact SUV for the 11-rider team (called Team Ford EcoBoost) headed by Women’s Elite National circuit champion, Nikki Juniper.
The 2016 Tour de France (the 103rd edition) gets underway this morning with a 188-km ride along the north coast in Manche, between Mont-Saint-Michel and Utah Beach.