Daniel Mangeas

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Daniel Mangeas
Daniel Mangeas is a talking cycling encyclopedia, never using notes, working entirely through improvisation.
Nico de Wee[1]

Daniel Mangeas, (born 10 April 1949) is a former baker who has been the commentator of the Tour de France and other important cycle races in France and Belgium since 1974. He commentates on 200 events a year,[1] but tries to never speak for the rest of the day after races, to preserve his voice.[2] He ceased commentating the Tour de France after the 2014 Tour.


Mangeas is from Saint-Martin-de-Landelles in Normandy, he was born in Mortain (Manche). He comes from a cycling family. He saw the Tour de France for the first time at the age of four. He also watched his cousin ride. He worked as a baker for 10 years in Saint-Hilaire-du-Harcouët[3] before being discovered by Albert Bouvet, the deputy director of the Tour de France.[4] Mangeas recounted in an interview with Vélo 101 that he had commentated on table-football games among friends when he was a child, and commented on his first bike race when he was 15 years old.[5]

Tour de France[edit]

He continued commentating after finishing his national service at 21, was heard by Albert Bouvet and recruited for the 1974 Tour de France as deputy speaker. He rode ahead of the race in an air-conditioned Chevrolet ("which were pretty rare at the time") to stand in for the main speaker, Pierre Shori. Shori's car broke down on the Saint-Lary-Soulan stage and Mangeas had to take over at the finish. Until then he had spoken only at the starts and at time trials.[6] He said:

He became the main speaker two years later, presenting riders at the start of each day's race for two hours, then driving the length of the race and commentating the last 50 km at the finish.

Mangeas' commentating has been praised for its energy and his knowledge of details about each rider.[8] On the other hand, he is criticised for presenting an over-optimistic view of the sport of cycling.[9]


  1. ^ a b de Wee, Nico (24 July 2004). "Interview de Daniel Mangeas : " La Voix " parle" (in French). Velo 101. Retrieved 8 November 2008. 
  2. ^ "Interview exclusive de Daniel Mangeas - La voix du Tour" (in French). 23 June 2007. Retrieved 8 November 2008. 
  3. ^ Drucker, Michel; Mangeas, Daniel. "Summary of Vivement le Tour". Solar. Retrieved 8 November 2008. 
  4. ^ Daniel Mangeas, des vélos dans la voix, Reflets n°62, June–July 2007, Conseil Régional de Basse-Normandie
  5. ^ de Wee, Nico (24 July 2004). "Interview de Daniel Mangeas : " La Voix " parle" (in French). Velo 101. Retrieved 8 November 2008. When I was small, there were bike races in our village with my friends and I always had to commentate even though I was a shy child. Then, in the only bar in the village there was a table-football game and I used to commentate on games between my friends. The man who ran the café, Henri Pigeon, was president of the comité des fêtes and he was looking for a commentator for a race in the village. I was 15 and he asked me to do it one Sunday and that was my first official race. 
  6. ^ Journal du Dimanche, France, 27 July 2003
  7. ^ "Daniel Mangeas, la voix du Tour depuis 34 ans" (in French). Agence France-Presse. 9 July 2007. Retrieved 8 November 2008. 
  8. ^ Libération, France; July 1999. Retrieved on 8 November 2008.
    "The microphone-man dances almost on one foot, crying the records of the 177 riders without ever forgetting to say that is one rider is so strong it's because he eats only black radish. Finally he shuts up, still ringing in your head... He's like a gong that rings on and on without stopping."
  9. ^ Libération, France; July 1999. Retrieved on 8 November 2008.
    "He evokes a dream world of cycling without cheats, where all the riders are good boys. And where all the team doctors are like family doctors in the countryside, in corduroy trousers, with a pipe in their mouth. You can't count on Mangeas to empty the gutters of cycling... The smoke of doping doesn't inconvenience him. For the 28 years that he has held the job, he has seen riders climbing on to his podium. Little guys, big guys, even guys stuffed with corticoids."