As the Grand Depart of this year’s Tour begins in Leeds, we consider the impact Lancashire and Yorkshire have made on the world’s greatest cycle race.
The British didn’t ‘do’ cycling. At least, that was the perception before Brian Robinson became the first British rider to finish the race (in 1955) and then win a stage, in 1958. From Mirfield, just a quick sprint from the routes of this year’s first two stages, Brian was Britain’s – and Yorkshire’s – first Tour de France hero, not that he sees it quite that way. "I suppose I played my part, I set the ball rolling if you like..." he modestly tells the Le Tour website.