Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Golden Age Begin's

One of my favorite blogs must be the postings coming from Dave Moulton, the framebuilder of the same frames. His views of the history of cycling are not copies of Wiki pages but rather things that he remembers from times past. He wrote a great article on Jean Robic, the first winner of the Tour de France after the end of the Second World War and the first World Cyclocross champs.
Jean Robic, Luchon - Pau 1947
His win just after the war gave the French a much needed boost to morale. Times were tough and people all over Europe turned to sport as a distraction. Leather-head, as he was known, for his constant crashes and thus wore a helmet to protect a already cracked skull was exactly what the doctor ordered. His win of the Tour came rather controversially on the last day and was the first winner of the Tour not to wear the yellow jersey during the Tour. He attacked Brambilla who was on the Franco-Italian team, both Germany and Italy not being invited. The sentiment in the peloton was not to help the Italian chase Robic, even though the Tour tradition is that the last day is more of a procession. Edouard Fachleitner was on the French team, the National teams were still in use, and went with the little giant. He would receive 100,000 Francs for his effort as Robic asked him to work for that same amount to help him. Fachleitner not going to kick a gift horse in the mouth happily agreed. The money was given to him but as the rules stated Robic gave the money to the French Team who would then split the prize money, René Vietto too his death bed told Fachleitner he should have asked for more.
Paul Neri et Jean Robic, Lourdes - Toulouse 1948

Photo from L'Eqippe
References: Wiki and Moulton
Any information on this post or any stories you would like to share can be sent to me. Don't be shy, lets share the history of our great sport
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