I have had frequent requests over the years from numerous Eagle readers who, when trying on the latest piece of lycra cycling kit at their local bike shop, have encountered this rather smutty cycling poster, and they have consistently raised eyebrows over why such an image should be considered appropriate on the wall of their local bike shop’s toilet/changing room?

I happen to take these requests very seriously, and so I, Euro Freddie, after spending innumerous hours studying the image in question, believe I may have finally gotten to the bottom of this posterior - ah - I mean poster!! For as it turns out, the uninhibited 1970’s are well chronicled as the golden age of professional cycling, and this photo only furthers the colourations of such claims.

Back in 1977 I was actually present at the inaugural Tour Cycliste Féminin from whence this photograph was taken. That year the promoters found themselves in a spot of difficulty - being rather strapped for cash - and a board member suggested the cost-cutting measure of having the women race in the nude. So very French... Surprisingly, in its first and only nude edition, this women’s version of the Tour de France bicycle race turned out to be a real eye opener.

Speeds during the inaugural Tour Cycliste Féminin were consistently higher than those of the men at that year’s Tour de France, and it became quite apparent that the wool team kits of yore were about as aero as a fleece onesie. This sparked Assos of Switzerland to design and fabricate the first lycra skin suits, which were then debuted by the Italian national team, during the Track World Championships of 1978. And the rest, as they say, is lycra history.

Thus your LBS’s poster in their WC is totally cycling PC  -Euro Freddie.

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Criterium Corner with Euro Freddie