• Ride to Paris – From ‘crazy’ idea to unforgettable event

    220 CERATIZIT employees supported their CERATIZIT-WNT PRO CYCLING TEAM at the first ‘Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift’

    Ride to Paris

German Stevie Awards 2023

Ride to Paris

Unforgettable, an event I will look back on forever – this, and sometimes more effusively, is how the participants of the ‘Ride to Paris’ summed up their experience after finishing their own small ‘Tour de France’. More specifically, they cycled 80 kilometres from Pontoise to the centre of Paris and back. What might sound like a small excursion was in fact much more – after all, there were 220 cycling enthusiasts from 26 European CERATIZIT and Plansee sites riding a variety of bikes through the busy streets of Paris. The members of this large group, who were easily recognisable in their blue tour jerseys, the same ones that the CERATIZIT-WNT PRO CYCLING TEAM also wore, biked towards one of the highlights of the weekend: the Arc de Triomphe on the Champs-Élysées, which all 220 cyclists circled twice.

Rooting for the cycling team

The planning team of the ‘Ride to Paris’ also had this picture in mind. Rejected at first as a fanciful notion, it soon became clear that even a ‘crazy’ venture such as this might be possible. However, the real reason for journeying to the French capital with such a large group was the CERATIZIT-WNT PRO CYCLING TEAM. To be exact, a squad of six women cyclists from six countries who competed in the inaugural ‘Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift’. So far, only men had been allowed to torment and prove themselves in the world’s most prestigious road race. True, there had been several attempts in the past to put together a tour exclusively for women cyclists, but it wasn’t until the ‘Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift’ that women’s cycling finally had an event of the same calibre as the men's tour. In order that the event got the appropriate media coverage, the approx. one-week race started on the last day of the men’s race in Paris on 24 July.

  • Rideto Paris

    To endure the many different terrains of the 8 stages totalling 1,029 kilometres, the women cyclists were chosen with a view towards the expected mass sprints and the gruelling, sometimes extremely steep climbs. Besides Olympic gold medal winner Lisa Brennauer from Germany, five other women cyclists competed: Laura Asencio, France; Maria Giulia Confalonieri, Italy; Sandra Alonso, Spain; Kathrin Schweinberger, Austria; and Marta Lach, Poland. All six are experienced and successful cyclists who have won numerous well-known European tours.

  • Watching the first stage in person

    It was a fitting start to the tour that 220 employees of CERATIZIT were sitting in the stands to loudly support ‘their team’ – this time dressed in conspicuous red ‘I love CERATIZIT’ shirts. It’s no wonder that with so much support, the cyclists achieved great performances during the first stage of the tour. Plus, the employees also got to witness the finale of the men’s Tour de France before they had to say goodbye and head home. One could tell that this weekend had been a complete success: There had been many opportunities to laugh, have fun together, chat, and make new friends – an event that will linger in people’s memories for a long time.

    Rideto Paris
Ride to Paris

Three-day programme of networking and fun

Besides the bike tour through Paris on Saturday Midday and the support of our Women’s Cycling Team at a grandstand on Sunday, there were a lot more joint activities over the three days and plenty of opportunities for the employees from different European branches to get to know one another – among the incredible atmosphere of one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. A boat cruise together on Friday evening was the perfect start to the weekend, for against the breathtaking background of Paris at night the participants couldn’t help but start good conversations and get to know one another.

On Saturday evening, the French colleagues organised a delicious barbecue in Pontoise and thus created the right environment to review the events of the last few days. The cycling tour that they enjoyed together continued to be the main topic of conversation, and the participants looked together at the pictures they had taken and proudly shared them on their social media channels under the hashtag #RideToParis.

Weekend summary video

Some more impressions from our event Ride to Paris