Wondered what those Halfords ads were all about? Wonder no longer...

If you're like us you've probably been wondering exactly what the storyline is behind those Halfords Tour de France ads on ITV4, whilst also kneeling and thanking the gods of cycling that they're a less annoying than the Chris Boardman ones from last year. Anyway, the full 15-minute video is on the Halfords channel on Youtube, and we've included it below.

The premise, as you may have already guessed, is to take an average Joe on an average bike and stick them onto the Tour parcours to see how they fare. The average Joe in question is Dan Francis, a 29-year-old employee of a pharmaceutical company, and the average bike is, well, probably a bit above average; it's the £999 Carrera Virago which we tested on road.cc not so long ago. "A versatile, comfortable, performance oriented, carbon bike and a real bargain too", was Stuart Kerton's verdict on the bike. Certainly it's one of the best road bikes you have for your cycle-to-work grand.

We meet Dan on the prologue course in Liège, and there's plenty of sunny swoopy shots of him tackling the Tour's sixth road stage from Épernay to Metz, but the real challenges come later in the vid. First he has a go at the 1,993m Col de la Madeleine before tackling the fearsome 2,067, Col de la Croix de Fer. There are hurty legs, triumph, disappointment and tears along the way, plus a cameo from sometime road.cc contributor Phil Gale shouting encouragement from the team car. And to finish it all off Dan tackles the mayhem of the Champs Elysées traffic. Anyway, we won't spoil it for you. Enjoy!

Dave is a founding father of road.cc and responsible for kicking the server when it breaks. In a previous life he was a graphic designer but he's also a three-time Mountain Bike Bog Snorkelling world champion, and remains unbeaten through the bog. Dave rides all sorts of bikes but tends to prefer metal ones. He's getting old is why.