Here is an overview of the “Concours de Machines” held in France.

Concours de Machines

As an event to compete
for handmade bicycle technology,
it is operated by
which is composed of people involved
in bicycle production.
The teams participating
in the competition
will manufacture (handmade)
bicycles that meet the themes
and required specifications
presented by the organizer,
and participate in and riding.

The evaluation of the competition is
not limited to the order of arrival
● Ideas
● Manufacturing technology
● Weight (ligheness)
● Production policy
● Durability and Reliability
Etc. will be evaluated comprehensively.
Concours de Machines 2019

Bicycle inspection scene after 2019 PBP riding.

Concours de Machines2019=Paris Brest Paris2019 Start
The themes presented are diverse and harsh.
The 2019 tournament was to participate
in Paris-Brest-Paris
and ride 1,200km.

2021 tournament is a
bike packing tour
(Load a set of camping
equipment on the bicycle
and run through the fields)

History of Concours de Machines

The current Concours de Machines have been held annually since 2016 (Note: 2020 was canceled due to the affect of Covid19). It looks like a new event, but it’s actually a competition over 100 years of history, first held in 1903 with several breaks.

Cover photo of old Le Cycle magazine
Cover photo of old “Le Cycle” magazine.
Left: 1946 Bicycles stored before the race (above) and at Parc Ferme,
Right: J.Routine undergoing a bicycle inspection before the start of the race in 1947

While bicycle races such as road races receive team support and compete only in order of arrival, support is prohibited during riding. It is necessary for the rider to deal with obstacles such as breakdowns and reach the goal. In addition, damage to bicycles and parts will be deducted, so high durability, reliability and weight reduction are required.

In addition, lighting device is essential because it runs day and night. Repair supplies, tools, food, and water that are needed on the way. The bicycle and rider must carry it by themselves, and bags to store them and racks to attach to the bicycle are required.

In the 1930s, the front gear of the participants’ bicycles of the Tour de France was still mainly single gear, but Concours de Machines had already adopted the front double. In the 1940s, some bicycles used duralumin as the frame material, and some had a body weight in the 10 kg range.

1940's Rene Herse and 1960's Goeland
Left: 1940s Rene Herse, Right: 1960s Goeland

Famous French builders (A.Singer, Goeland, J.Routine, Rene Hese, etc.) have participated in this event and have worked hard with each other to create excellent bicycles. It is said that the style of “Landner”, which is also popular in Japan, was also formed by this event.