Thursday, February 12, 2015

Alcyon bicycles, 1910

La Vie Quotidienne des Français au XXe Siecle.  1900-2000.  Booster-LPM, 1999.

Between 1890 and 1957, Alcyon made bicycles, motorcycles and cars.  They actually entered a 350cc 4-valve single-cylinder motorcycle in the 1912 Isle of Man TT races, although neither of their entries finished.   From 1906 to 1955 the company had a professional cycling team, which won the Tour de France 6 times.


Tom Gaspick said...

There appears to be quite a story going on there -- the lion running off with the key to the enormous padlock and all. I don't get it, but maybe that's just me.

The Duke said...

The four top contestants that year all rode Alcyon bicycles, and all are named on the list behind the character, who is saying, "It's not like they're afraid of me..." I think this is meant to be sarcastic. In other words, the only way to stop the team from winning was to padlock their bicycles. I don't know why it's a lion carrying the key--perhaps that's an allusion to another competitor's machine?

Tom Gaspick said...

Yes. It's probably one of those things that only a native French contemporary would 'get'.

And perhaps, too, it's something of a 'French thing', like this: