For the first time in its 104-year history, the Tour de France came to London this weekend. Luckily enough, the wet and miserable weather of the last couple of weeks appears to have eased off, so the 500,000 people that filled the streets to watch the prologue this morning were able to enjoy some beautiful (and much-awaited) sunshine. Thank God for that, as it could so easily have been a washout.
For the dedicated sun-seekers, it was possible to watch the race from the comfort of a lounger, as there were big screens dotted around London's parks.
This being a major world event, and the anniversary of the 7/7 London bombings, there was a lot of police around - both British and the French Gendarmerie, who looked quite impressive arriving en masse at Whitehall.
First, the sponsors' floats and random cyclists went through London.
Then the prologue (individual time trial) started at 3 pm. It was almost impossible to take decent pictures as the cyclists were literally wizzing past, competing for the top place and the maillot jaune - the leader's yellow jersey, which was won by Fabian Cancellara of Switzerland. You can see more photos here.
I wish I had a flat right on the route of the prologue, as this guy does. It's much more civilised than standing around on the sidelines.
Stage 1 will take place tomorrow with a 203km sprint & climb between Greenwich and Canterbury. Allez allez and good luck to all!