I believe there were many Australians like me who sat up into the early hours of the morning watching the last few legs of the Tour as it was broadcast live on TV. In fact I heard one Melbournian comment that they believed the Tour definitely needed more than the two scheduled rest days because they simply couldn't cope with the sleep deprivation after watching every nightly broadcast of the hectic cycling schedule! If they felt like that as a spectator, imagine how the Tour cyclists must have felt!
With cyclists completing more than 86 hours of riding over 21 days across the length and breadth of France before concluding at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, it is absolutely amazing that the difference between first and second place was less than 95 seconds! What an incredible margin after 3 weeks of competition! No wonder we were glued to our TV screens to watch it.
The excitement of the Tour and Cadel's win for BMC Racing Team created quite an impact across the world. Aussie supporters travelled to the local streets of France to wave their iconic Aussie symbols in support of Cadel, local bike shops in Australia reported a significant increase in sales during July, and anything to do with cycling was suddenly popular.
There is a welcome home parade planned for Cadel Evans in Melbourne on Friday 12 August and it is expected that he will be both surprised and humbled by the anticipated excitement of the Melbourne crowd, congratulating him as he travels through the city streets.
Aussie's love a sporting hero and Cadel is a perfect sports hero to admire. After many years of hard work commencing as a 17 year old training at the Australian Institute of Sport in one year Cadel turned a 26th place finish in the 2010 Tour de France into a 1st place win in 2011. Many people will relish the chance to cheer and holler and 'Yell for Cadel' on Friday to congratulate him on this amazing achievement.
Never has yellow been such a favourable colour to wear as it has been in July 2011 at the Tour de France! Congratulations Cadel. You have made your country proud.
The idea of triumph runs throughout the Scriptures in a broad range of applications and illustrations. Psalm 92 verse 4 seems to fit well here: "For thou, Lord hast made me glad through thy work: I will triumph in the works of thy hands."
Merewyn Foran is married and an area director of a corporate welfare services group in Melbourne.