Guy Niv becomes first Israeli to complete Tour de France

The 26-year-old competed as part of the Israel Start-Up Nation team


On Sunday, Guy Niv became the first ever Israeli cyclist to complete the Tour de France, which was postponed from June due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The 26-year-old ranked 139th on the 21-stage tour, and was competing as part of the Israel Start-Up Nation (ISN) team, which was participating for the first time.

Niv said he felt "shivers when I crossed the finish line on the Champs-Elysees.

"It was a sense of vast relief and sheer happiness: I have done it for the next generation of young Israeli cyclists. They can now dream of achieving this and more."

“Guy impressed us all,” the team’s sports director Eric Van Lancker commented. “He knew that the whole country - Israel - was looking up to him, and he dealt with that pressure admirably. We are proud of him.”

ISN made headlines in July when they announced Four times Tour de France winner Chris Froome would join the team for the remainder of the year. 

The team hoped Froome would help secure another Tour de France win – his fifth – while wearing the blue and white colours.

ISN's owner and self-styled “godfather of Israeli cycling” Sylvan Adams said in a statement that Niv had "faced the country's and the team's expectations and never blundered.

"I can promise you that we will be back next year with a strengthened team which will be led by the greatest cyclist of the generation – Chris Froome. We are just getting started.”

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