Chris Froome has become the first man to cycle non-stop between Folkestone in Kent, England, and Coquelles in the Pas-de-Calais, France. Froome rode through the tunnel at training-pace, completing the 32-mile journey in 55 minutes and reaching 65kmph.
In a world first, Eurotunnel opened its service tunnel to enable the Tour de France winning cyclist to cross the Channel, 100 metres below the waves.
Man has been swimming, flying and even driving across the Channel for years. Now, on the day when the world’s top cyclists cross from the UK to France, Chris Froome has become to first man to cycle under the Channel.
In early June, Eurotunnel allowed Froome, Team Sky and support crews from sponsor Jaguar access to the 32-mile service tunnel that acts as maintenance access and emergency exit for the train tunnels. With a cleared run through the service tunnel Froome made the undersea crossing in less than an hour. Froome rode through the 32-mile tunnel at a training-pace, completing the world-first ride in a time of approximately 55 minutes and reached speeds of up to 65 kilometres per hour.
The Channel is no stranger to world firsts. In 1875 captain Matthew Webb became the first person to swim its waters while 32 years later Louis Bleriot made the first ever cross-Channel flight. In 1994, Olympic gold medallist Daley Thompson was the first person to walk the Channel, in 1994 again the first Shuttle crossed beneath the waves.