The four time Tour de France winner has said that he wants to take part in the Tour de Yorkshire this year – but it looks like little Thomas Pearman has got to the winners' trophy before him!
Three-year-old Thomas was one of a handful of Doncaster school pupils who got their mits on the £5,000 golden prize as race organisers took it on a whistlestop tour of the borough.
He, along with year one pupil Rosie Micklethwaite, aged six, F2 youngster Fabian Gregorczuk, aged five, and 10-year-old year six pupil Leah Ringland, all got to touch the trophies that will be handed to the winners of the men’s race and the women’s race in May.
The trophy was brought for all the youngsters at their school, Toll Bar Primary School to see.
Tour de Yorkshire representative Alan Rowley told the youngsters about the history of the race, which starts in Doncaster on May 2, and will pass right past the school. He let some of them put on special gloves to handle the prizes
He told pupils how the 7kg cup had been created by the same Italian jewellers as the FA Cup, and was coated with nine carat told. Pupils’ guesses regarding its value started at £1 – well short of the try value, which he told the pupils knocked the organisers back £5,000 each.
Toll Bar was one of a number of schools visited by the trophy, along with Bentley High Street Primary, Askern Spa Juniors, Norton Infnats, and Campsmount.
It head earlier been shown at Doncaster Market, the Frenchgate Centre, and Doncaster College.
Pupils Callum Redgrift, aged 11, and Caitlin Barrass, aged 10, were inpressed with the trophy.
Callum said. “I like cycling, and I think its going to be really exciting when it comes past the school. I’ll watch the rest of it on the television.”
Caitlin added: “I think the trophy looks cool . It’d would be great to win it one day.”
The school is already looking forward to the race, and head teacher Steve Bower said all the pupils would be outside the school watching the race on May 2.
He said: “I was proud to see our youngsters with the trophy, and I’d love to see some of our pupils taking part in the race in a few years. We have some keen cyclists.”
There are already plans to decorate some bikes and display them on the route, and also to create some field art on the school field, for the television helicopter to pick up as it flies past covering the race.
“We will be running lots of activities around the race,” said teacher Ann Melling. “The kids are really excited about it.”
Chairman of the governors, John Robinson also popped in for a look at the trophy.
“We’re extremely proud that its coming through Toll Bar,” he said. “I think the whole village will be out watching.”