Dispatch des Femmes: The crowds have been the icing on the cake

Fans of the Femmes have been showing up en masse

REIMS, France (VN) — There were many unknowns about the Tour de France Femmes before the inaugural race began. One question loomed large — would the race attract the throngs of spectators so ubiquitous at the men’s race?

At the start of stage 3, I wandered around the fan zone in Reims. The town center was buzzing with activity — a group of a hundred kids had just gotten brand new bikes that morning, and locals of all ages sported cycling caps in the familiar shades of polka dots, yellow, and green.

In Epernay later that day, there were just as many people at the finish, and images from during the stage showed fans among the rows of Champagne grapes.