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A floating headquarters

news26.06.2013Pre-race

© A.S.O.

Accommodating the entourage of the Tour de France for the Grand Départ is not an easy task and this year in Porto-Vecchio the organisers came up with an interesting logistical solution. The race headquarters and press centre is housed aboard the Mega Smeralda that is docked in the harbour.

The bay at Porto-Vecchio welcomed a special guest on Tuesday morning with the arrival of Mega Smeralda. It is far from the first time that the ferry, which links the island of Corsica to the mainland, has visited the harbour but this time it will be docked for almost a week. It houses one of the most important strategic sites in the days before the Tour, including the race headquarters and the press centre.
On Wednesday afternoon, there was a ceremony to open the press centre involving race director Christian Prudhomme and the President of the Corsican Regional Authority, Paul Giacobbi, as well as the Mayor of Porto-Vecchio, Georges Mela.
It's not an easy task to house everyone from the organisation in one location but the ferry is an ideal solution. The offices for the organisers blended in seamlessly to the décor of the ‘Dancing Palace', the ferry's disco.
“It's a different sort of start and this permanence is a unique setting. The setting seems to make everyone happy and I wonder if, in the future, we might have to regularly provide a boat,” laughed Prudhomme. “At any rate, the Grand Départ in Corsica would not have been possible without such a logistical solution.”
Many members of the organisation, media and others who work on the Tour will be based on the Mega Smeralda, but riders have their lodgings in a 12 hotels in and around Porto-Vecchio.
Some of the competitors will visit the ferry in the coming days as there will be some press conferences and other meetings taking place on the giant floating headquarters before the action gets underway this coming Saturday.

The news in pictures

photo26/06/2013 

© A.S.O.

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