Tadej Pogačar finally received the reception worthy of the Tour de France champion. After the premiere victory at the Tour de France in 2020 Tadej did not have a chance to celebrate his biggest achievement with his loyal fans back home because of strict Covid-19 regulations. This year, the reception was given a green light and there were two more reasons for celebration. Tadej provided additional joy to all his fans by defending the yellow jersey and winning Tour de France for the second time in a row. In addition, he also won the first Slovenian medal in cycling at the Olympic Games. For the mentioned successes, the fans thanked him with mass participation and a magnificent reception in his hometown – Komenda, Slovenia.

On Friday afternoon, the first fans or cycling fans started gathering at the hippodrome in Komenda anxiously awaiting their hero. Late in the afternoon, Tadej arrived to the hippodrome in a glorious fashion: riding a bicycle in a winning yellow jersey, accompanied by “his” young cyclists from the POGI TEAM. Arrival of the back to back Tour de France champion was accompanied by the music from Komenda brass band, a line-up of a large number of firefighter vehicles from the surrounding fire brigades with lights and sirens on and loud cheering from more than 1,500 fans. Conversations, recognitions, compliments, cheering, the cultural program and everything that followed was part of a pleasant afternoon, a part of which you can relive in the video provided below. Tadej took a lot of time for his loyal fans, who were delighted to have an opportunity to receive autographs and even pictures with their hero. Towards the end of the day, which will forever remain in his memory, Tadej summed up this special experience as follows:

“What I am experiencing and seeing here is the most beautiful reward. Two years ago I was here at a reception in front of the municipality building, so with that memory in mind I was really suprised that some many people showed up. I really didn’t expect so many people here at the hippodrome today. It feels like I’m still in Paris on the Champs Elysees. I get goosebumps just by talking about this. Last few days I could hardly wait to get back home… and now that I am seeing all this, I know it all paid off. This is really something incredible, unforgetable. A speacial thanks to everyone who came here today, cheered for me and supported me. Yes, last month was really crazy and I still can’t fully process everything that I experienced. I’m happy, satisfied and will now be enjoying my free time for the next two weeks. At the same time I can’t wait for the upcoming races. The main remaining goals fort he season are definitely the European and World Championships. These races are always special and I am always honored to represent the Slovenian national team.”

Photo: Alen Milavec