Now that the games at London 2012 Olympics have at last started all the anticipation is over and we can look forward to many days of thrills (and inevitable disappointments) as we watch our sporting heroes and national icons compete and hopefully win medals.
After the victory of Bradley Wiggins and his British teammates at the quintessentially French event, the Tour de France, cycling as a sport and pastime has risen up our consciousness in an unprecedented way and many are predicting an increase in the popularity of cycling as a result. But how does the experience of the ordinary cyclist in the land of the rosbifs compare to that of being on two wheels over the Channel? Whatever success the British cycling team have in the upcoming festival of sport, France still beats the UK hands down as a fun place to ride a bike. This is particularly true in areas like Normandy, Champagne Ardennes and Les Apilles where the landscape suits leisure riders and does not involve them in the scary gradients of the Tour.