Tour opts for gender-equal podium ceremony

FILE PHOTO: Cycling - Tour de France - The 128-km Stage 21 from Rambouillet to Paris Champs-Elysees - July 28, 2019 - Team INEOS rider Egan Bernal of Colombia celebrates on the podium, after winning the general classification and the overall leader's yellow jersey. Stephane Mantey/L'Equipe/Pool via Reuters

PARIS (Reuters) - The Tour de France is ending its tradition of having two hostesses handing out prizes on the podium, opting for a gender-equal ceremony, the race director said on Wednesday.

“You were used to see the champion flanked with two hostesses, with five local representatives on one side and five sponsor representatives on the other,” Christian Prudhomme told reporters.

“Now it’s gonna be different with one local representative and one representative of the yellow jersey sponsor, with one host and one hostess for the first time.”

The Tour de France starts in Nice on Aug. 29.

Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Ed Osmond