France’s cycling team is adding ammunition to that old cliche, “the French are rude.”
Cycling News’ Patrick Fletcher reports the French Cycling Federation gave its male team members business class tickets for a trip to the Australia Worlds event.
But everyone else — including the female team members — were given coach seats for the long haul to the land Down Under.
A French Federation spokesperson reportedly told media outlet Ouest France that outcome came about because:
…the men are going to defend their title this year, once again. And above all, because economic choices had to be made.
The journey being very long, it costs an enormous amount, and if we wanted to take everyone, we needed to make choices. And if everyone were to be in business, many people would have had to stay at home.
I appreciate that the Federation wants to bring “everyone.” And I also get that flying so many people is expensive.
But unless coach were sold out, why not put everyone in economy? Especially if the French Cycling Federation is so worried about money?
Christophe Manin, the French Cycling Federation’s technical director said, “For the men, we’ve been world champions for the last two years. We are really going there to win, while we are more of an outsider in the girls’ competition.”
So, take that, girls! Feel lucky that you’re even invited to ride in the flying air machine thingy! And make the men some sandwiches or something while you’re at it. (I’m being sarcastic, by the way.)
Mr. Manin apparently also said that if the FCF’s mountain bikers were traveling, he’d put the team’s two women in business and the men in coach.
But, like, why not have everyone travel together in the same class?
The pro and college sports people I know told me that when their teams chartered planes, first class seats were solely for coaches, front office personnel, team owners, university leadership, etc. But everyone else sat in coach. No players received preferential treatment, outside of maybe getting an exit row or bulkhead seat.
Even the best players didn’t get to ride in first class. Star quarterbacks and ace-level pitchers all did the walk of shame back to coach. (This applies, of course, when their planes were equipped with multiple classes. Some teams fly coach-only carriers such as Allegiant, Southwest, and Sun Country).
What do you think about all this? Should the men receive special treatment? Or should everyone ride in the same class? Please share your thoughts in the below Comments section.
(And if the men’s team loses, someone is going to cry oui, oui, oui all the way home.)
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