63 days on a bike, 63 inspirations for environmental sustainability. Keith Tuffley cycled every stage and every kilometre of the three Grand Toursonly hours before the pro’s, to raise awareness for environmentalsustainability.
Starting at 5 o'clock each morning I am attempting to cycle every stage, and every kilometre of the three Grand Tours (Giro d’Italia, Tour de France and Vuelta a España), in one season. I am cycling on the same day as each race, with the aim of hitting the finish-line before the course is closed. That is 63 days on the bike, 10,253 kilometres in distance, and 150,000 metres of vertical ascent. Why? This is not a race to win, but a journey to promote the cause of environmental sustainability through various initiatives along the route. And we promise to give you an insight into the spectacle of road racing that you haven’t seen before. Will you join?
The three grand tours of professional road cycling – the Giro d'Italia, Tour de France, and Vuelta a Espana - are quite simply the greatest cycle stage races in the world. Each event comprises 21 stages, covering over 3,300 km of the most scenic countryside in southern Europe, passing through hundreds of beautiful small villages and attracting millions of passionate fans along the route.
This being the 100th edition of the Tour de France, what better way to celebrate 100 years of Grand Tours than to attempt to cycle the route of each event?
For me, this is not a race but a journey, where I’ll have time to enjoy the enthusiastic crowds, the party atmosphere, the serene beauty of the countryside and some the best cafes along the route. At what other global sporting event can you use the iconic venue right before the main event? Imagine teeing off at the Masters at Augusta, racing your car around Monaco’s F1 circuit, shooting a few goals at Wembley or playing a match at Wimbledon – mere hours before the big event and surrounded by spectators who have already gathered to see the pros. It's a one-of-a-kind experience. Road cycling is special in that spectators can actually participate in the spectacle like no other major sporting event in the world.
In 100 years, only 39 pro cyclists have completed all three Grand Tours in the one year. My goal is to be the first recreational cyclist to complete the feat of cycling the routes on the same day as each race, in the one year.
The second objective of the Grand Tours Project is to share this spectacle. You will get to see the incredible scenery, the screaming spectators, the stunning villages, the behind-the-scenes happenings, and everything else that you will not see on TV. We promise to give you an insight into these races that you've never seen before. And if I can manage to stay awake over dinner, I might even post a daily diary of my on-the-road experiences.
Our final objective is to use this adventure as a forum for discussing the cause of planetary sustainability. This is a complex issue, and one that needs a full 63 days to cover! For us, a sustainable future is exciting, fascinating, fun, full of opportunities – and achievable. To this end, on this website there'll be Daily Quotes and a Daily Eco blog full of information, insights, ideas and solutions from prominent experts – scientists, ecologists, activists, entrepreneurs, business leaders, economists, writers, film directors, explorers and adventurers – who can inspire us to think and act differently as the world moves towards a sustainable future.
In case you are wondering, we are not asking for donations to a particular cause. We would simply ask you to enjoy the website, support us through your words of encouragement on our social media links, and spend a bit of time each day to learn something about our sustainability challenges and solutions so that you too can become part of this critically important journey. Your positive contribution to this debate is also encouraged by commenting on the Eco blogs, again through our social media links.
– Keith Tuffley
"You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make"
This project, the website and its content wouldn’t have been possible without the incredible skill, abundant patience, love and support of our fantastic creative team. A huge thanks to all:
Morten Isachsen, Per Olav Walmann, Per Kristian Stoveland, Anders Aakre, Brent Humphreys, Fredrik Broden, Max Hartmann, Arnt Heggli, Lars Berteig Andersen, Vi Duc Truong, Louise Southerden, Darren Frederiksen, Lars Henrik Lundsgaard, Harry Evans and Martine Kveim.
The Grand Tours Project would like to thank our partners for their commitment to our mission. The contributions they have made of their time, event-management, supplies, distribution and ongoing support have been enormous and a key part of what makes the Grand Tours Project.
A special thanks to: Valentina Lualdi (RCS Sport), Michel Masquelier, Loris Francini, Luca Baldanza, Amy Young, and Ellie Tilson (IMG), Jan Solvang, Tore Rørtvedt, Morten Jørs (TV2), Antonio Marcon, Claudio Salomoni (Wilier bikes), Willem van Bracht, Sabrina Bonaiti, Monica Santini (Santini), Lasse Andersen (Oakley), Anne Jubelin, Michel Golay and Xavier Gefaud (Lonhea), and more.
Keith has a new story to tell every day about the people he meets, the challenges he faces en route and the physical endurance required for this endeavour. These daily stories can be seen viewed under "Go to Latest Stage" on each day. You may download the overall press-release about why Keith is doing this and how this idea came to mind. There are also photos for download, and lastly the daily videos can be found here.