Chris Froome, defending champion of the Tour de France, has become the first person to cycle the length of the Channel Tunnel, assisted by Jaguar.
The Team Sky leader and winner of last year’s yellow jersey rode from the Eurotunnel terminal in Folkestone to Calais at an average of 50 meters below the sea.
Froome cycled through the tunnel at a training pace, completing the world first, which has been captured by Jaguar on video, in around 55 minutes, reaching speeds of up to 40mph.
Speaking about the world first, Froome said: “Cycling under the sea was an incredible experience. Opportunities to become the first person in the world to achieve these kind of feats are extremely rare nowadays, especially as a pro-cyclist.
“To become the first person ever to cycle through the Eurotunnel was right up there with some of the most iconic rides I’ve ever done, this must have been one of very few ‘world first’ rides left!”
This follows from the announcement last week that that Jaguar have launched a campaign in conjunction with Team Sky to support their efforts for a third consecutive Tour de France win.
The #KeepPushing campaign marks the fourth year of the successful partnership between Jaguar and Team Sky, which both companies say is based on their shared values of performance, innovation and technological achievement.
Mark Cameron, Global Brand Experience Director for Jaguar Land Rover, said: “One of our core beliefs at Jaguar is themed around ‘Keep Pushing’, for new technology, experiences, goals and achievements. This is perhaps the ultimate expression of this philosophy, completing a feat that no one has ever done before or is likely to repeat.”
Official ‘Innovation Partner’
Jaguar have further deepened their association with Team Sky this year, having announced a two-year agreement as an official ‘Innovation Partner’, lending design and engineering resources to the team in order to further enhance their performances.
The benefits of the increased association have already been seen, with the launch of the new Pinarello Dogma F8 racing bicycle in June, where Jaguar’s Aerodynamics and CFD teams assisted Pinarello and Team Sky in optimising the aerodynamic performance of the new bike.
The Jaguar team was able to make the new bike 26 per cent lighter than the previous model and around six per cent more aerodynamic, while altering the bike’s frame to make it 40 per cent more aerodynamically efficient.
As official suppliers to the team, Jaguar have also supplied the team with a fleet of high-performance Jaguar XF Sportbrakes for the road.
The feat has been in the planning stages for a long time, with discussions between Jaguar and Eurotunnel, who are celebrating the tunnel’s 20th anniversary this year, beginning over six months ago.