I keep trying to write other things about this picture…
About the Cycling Republic of Yorkshire.
About how shortly after I took this picture and Le Tour had ridden through we, on bike or on foot, took over the roads for six hours.
About how I climbed the Cote de Blubberhouses, a beautiful moor top crossing usually occupied by traffic so fast most two wheelers wouldn’t try unless they had a 1000cc engine and a death wish.
I wanted to write about how this great free public event was briefly privatised for a bit of royal nonsense with a ribbon.
About the democracy of cycling, how the bike you ride and the kit you ride in doesn’t matter, just riding makes you a citizen.
About how non-competitative cycling transcends class, gender, and slowly slowly on the lanes round here, cycling is beginning to transcend race.
About how at the team presentations in Leeds the second biggest cheer from the 12,000 watching wasn’t for Chris Froome, or Mark Cavendish or Banquo Wiggins, it was in response to the host’s invitation to welcome the first Chinese rider to take part in the tour, Cheng Ji.
With Ji, Yukiya Arashiro and Kevin Reza this year’s peloton is more diverse than this section of the crowd.
What I can’t get away from writing, and find completely weird in the Republic of Yorkshire on top of this hill between Wharefdale and the much more diverse valley, Airedale, is that everyone in the crowd is white.