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A random Finnish Twitter account that shares international cycling news and images was co-opted by sandwich-loving Philadelphians on Monday.

No surprise, really, seeing as the account posted something that seemed like content about the city’s fave hoagie retailer. The tweet included a picture of a field, somewhere in France, into which a tractor had mowed these Philly-triggering words:

“Allez Wawa.”

The phrase is actually not about a Delaware County-based convenience chain — it references a French man who seems to be neither a deli nor a gas station.

Twenty-nine-year-old Warren Barguil, known affectionately in his native country as “Wawa,” is a decorated cyclist who currently rides for a professional team based in Rennes, France. Barguil has been on the team for two years now, and he’s most well-known for winning two stages and the entire mountains classification of the Tour de France in 2017.

He’s also competing in this year’s edition of the world’s most famous cycling race, which is underway now, and will last through late July. (A spectator caused a massive crash yesterday by holding out a sign. Dozens of cyclists toppled all over each other.)

Whenever Barguil competes, his fans support by posting messages of support online — and apparently atop grassy farmland. The French phrase “Allez Wawa” translates to “Go Wawa,” and it popped up on social media when Barguil rode in the Tour de France last year, too.

But when Philly discovered the tractor-plowed words, we made it our own.

Within a couple hours, there were about a dozen regional riffs on the French phrase  — some commending the brand for its global reach, and others taking the opportunity to trash its regional gas station competitor.

“Even the snobby, snooty French understand that Wawa is better than Sheetz,” wrote @MattsMusings.

“Comment dit-on «Hoagiefest» en français ?” posted @mmmpah.

“When you stop to get gas and an elite meatball sub,” said @TimFromUConn.

Scroll down for some of the best Wawa TdF takes.


Michaela Winberg is a general assignment reporter at Billy Penn. She covers LGBTQ people and culture, public spaces, and transportation and mobility. She also sometimes produces radio and web features...