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“It’s because when we wear the same jersey, we look alike from the back,” Longo Borghini told VeloNews.
“It’s just beautiful to be here with her because it’s like being here with the flag of France,” Longo Borghini said. “It’s just wonderful. When you’re on her wheel you hear many times ‘Allez Audrey, Allez Audrey’!”
The two have been teammates since 2014, when they both rode for Norweigan pro conti Team Hitec Products. Then, it was on to UK squad Wiggle-Honda from 2015-2018. In 2019, both women joined the maiden Trek-Segafredo women’s team.
A friendship has developed over the years that goes far beyond the bike. The two have learned each other’s languages and traveled together outside of bike racing. The depth of the relationship sweetens Longo Borghini’s appreciation of the Tour de France Femmes for Cordon Ragot’s sake.
“It must be really nice for her,” she said. “And it’s really nice for me too because she’s my friend and I’m proud of her.”
For Cordon Ragot herself, being at the race has exceeded all expectations.
“It’s unbelievable,” the Frenchwoman said. “Really. I was expecting to be applauded because I’m national champion, but at this point, believe me, I never experienced that in my life, even in Bretagne. I’m shocked. Yesterday in the Mutigny climb I was like, ‘I need to push on the pedals, those people came for me!’ It was so impressive. I still can’t believe it, really.”