Unusual: 38 tricycles will ride the streets of Ariège this weekend

the essential
During the Ascension weekend, more than 80 people from all over France and beyond, all tricycle enthusiasts, go for a walk and visit the four corners of Ariège. Encounter with a machine like no other.

Residents of Ariège shouldn’t be surprised if they come across strange three-wheeled vehicles on the roads in the coming days. The French Tricyclist Association (ATF) is in fact organizing four days of outings on the territory, from tomorrow until Sunday.

David Déramont, coachwork teacher at the Foix apprentice training center, is the organizer of this unusual event. Passionate about vintage cars and assiduous collector, he explains: “I own about twenty vintage cars of all kinds. I have Peugeot, Renault, Citroën and even a tricycle. I don’t know where this passion came from, but I am very attached to the old man. It is this passion for vehicles that led me to this job. I try to draw inspiration from them as much as possible to pass on my knowledge to young people”.

38 tricycles to discover Ariège

Born in Toulouse and arrived in 1997 near Saint-Paul de Jarrat, he knows the Ariège landscape very well. “I often go for a walk on the weekends and it is true that our means of transport intrigue us, we immediately get noticed,” acknowledges David Déramont. For this Sunday morning we will be in the alleys of Villotte in Foix to exhibit our machines. The starting signal will be given on Thursday morning at the Camping du Lac de Foix, where the participants will be accommodated. In total, eighty mobile homes were booked with the help of the Ariège Tourist Development Agency, which was able to reserve places for as many people. »

“A very specific path was envisioned by me,” he continues. There are several nationalities present, so I’ll show them what I know. We will have Belgians, Germans or even English. Being the organizer, I will be in the lead with a truck containing all the necessary supplies for the day’s meals. 38 other vehicles will follow me into the Ariège valleys, including a dozen pre-war cars, the oldest from 1914.

Two repairmen have also been requisitioned for the occasion and a motorcyclist will guide the riders through the winding courses, as seen in the Tour de France. “We have tried to establish a price accessible to all, to allow all members to participate. It costs €280 for four days and three nights, including activities and meals. I even had caps made for them on behalf of the association”, points out David Déramont.

The passion for three wheels

But with all this, the tricycle, what is the aco? These are two-seater and three-wheeled vehicles mostly dating back to the 1920s. The car is also characterized by a light frame and streamlined bodywork of undeniable aesthetic originality, like a kind of airplane without wings.

The very first vehicles of this type date back to the beginning of the 20th century, but the heyday of the machine dates back to the interwar period. According to David Déramont, tricycles were intended for people who weren’t necessarily wealthy and in their prime. Production of these cars exploded in the Roaring Twenties thanks to a levy on owners of vehicles over 350kg. After this tax ceased in 1935, the design of these racing cars was discontinued in favor of new models. Tricycles are therefore rare.

The Association des tricyclecaristes de France has existed since 1990. Voluntarily limited to 150 members for the moment, it nevertheless remains open to people under 35. Every year it organizes rallies in two French departments. This year, Ariège has therefore been chosen to present the sumptuous landscapes of our department, together with Burgundy. You will be able to come across this atypical parade around the village of Foix throughout the weekend, hoping that the weather forecast does not spoil the visitors’ stay.

Where to see tricycles this weekend?

Thursday 18 May:
Departure from the Foix campsite, discovery of the Harras du Coyt in Mercus-Garrabet, return via Saint-Paul-de-Jarrat and the Pic de Montghaillard. Catering at the Camping du Lac.

Friday 19 May:
Departure from the Foix campsite, stop at the Mas-d’Azil for breakfast, visit the Labouiche cave, snack at the Col de Port, return to Foix. Dinner at Tasca.

Saturday 20 May:
Departure from the Camping du Lac, Lavelanet, Aigues-Vives, afternoon in karting, discovery of the Forges de Pyrène with a special activity. Dinner at Tasca.

Sunday 21 May:
Departure from the Foix campsite, Prat d’Albis, return to the alleys of Villote with exhibition of vehicles in front of the town hall. Free time and cold buffet at the campsite.

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