I was poking around the NYT's TdeF web site, they have a page of all the previous riders to win, place, or show. The riders come from the following countries:
AUSTRIA BELGIUM COLUMBIA CZECHOSLOVAKIA DENMARK FRANCE GERMANY IRELAND ITALY KAZAKISTAN LATVIA LITHUANIA LUXEMBOURG NETHERLANDS POLAND PORTUGAL SPAIN SWEDEN USA
To this observer, conspicuous in their absence are riders from the UK. I find this odd given the depth of bicycle culture in the UK, the number of fine riders and frame builders that come from there. Even Kazakistan is represented!
I know this may have something to do with the different types of racing events, and for some reason UK racers may not have trained for TdeF type events.
Anyone care to start a discussion?