A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 79
1992 The signing of the Maastricht treaty signaled the integration of the European Union. To celebrate, the 1992 Tour visited a record seven countries: Spain, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Luxembourg and Italy.
Spain’s Miguel Indurain won his second Tour, but the race is most remembered for Claudio Chiappucci’s epic solo break on home turf as the Tour entered Italy on the road to Sestriere, securing second place overall and immortality with the tifosi.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com


A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 79

1992 The signing of the Maastricht treaty signaled the integration of the European Union. To celebrate, the 1992 Tour visited a record seven countries: Spain, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Luxembourg and Italy.

Spain’s Miguel Indurain won his second Tour, but the race is most remembered for Claudio Chiappucci’s epic solo break on home turf as the Tour entered Italy on the road to Sestriere, securing second place overall and immortality with the tifosi.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 78
1991: Coca-Cola probably leaves a bitter taste in the mouth of The Tashkent Terror of Uzbekistan.
In the final sprint finish on the Champs Élysées, Djamolidine Abdoujaparov came crashing down after colliding with a Coke advertising hoarding.
He broke his collarbone and sustained head injuries, but, desperate to cling onto his Maillot Vert, he staggered across the line 14 minutes after the peloton finished.

Rules stated that if a rider crashed in the last kilometre and crossed the line they could maintain their position. Tough guy.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 78

1991: Coca-Cola probably leaves a bitter taste in the mouth of The Tashkent Terror of Uzbekistan.

In the final sprint finish on the Champs Élysées, Djamolidine Abdoujaparov came crashing down after colliding with a Coke advertising hoarding.

He broke his collarbone and sustained head injuries, but, desperate to cling onto his Maillot Vert, he staggered across the line 14 minutes after the peloton finished.

Rules stated that if a rider crashed in the last kilometre and crossed the line they could maintain their position. Tough guy.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 77
1990 Another Tour, another strike. Not the riders this time, but French farmers upset at imports of mutton from Eastern Europe. They hatched a plan to disrupt the Tour by blocking the roads.
The riders duly stopped but there was no diversion apparent to re-route the race.
That is, until a young lad called Michaël appeared on his scooter offering his services. He knew all the little lanes and tracks like the back of his hand and was happy to direct them down 25km of countryside roads until they joined the highway again, leaving the farmers seething their plan had been foiled.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 77

1990 Another Tour, another strike. Not the riders this time, but French farmers upset at imports of mutton from Eastern Europe. They hatched a plan to disrupt the Tour by blocking the roads.

The riders duly stopped but there was no diversion apparent to re-route the race.

That is, until a young lad called Michaël appeared on his scooter offering his services. He knew all the little lanes and tracks like the back of his hand and was happy to direct them down 25km of countryside roads until they joined the highway again, leaving the farmers seething their plan had been foiled.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 76
1989 Was this the finest race in the history of the Tour de France?
It was certainly an epic battle between Greg LeMond and Laurent Fignon. LeMond snatched the victory by a whisper - eight seconds. But was Fignon robbed?
Did LeMond win because of his aerodynamic helmet?
Was it because Fignon suffered terrible saddle sores?
Should Guimard have complained about Lemond’s use of tri bars?
Resigned to a crushing defeat, Fignon conceded “It’s not the quantity that matters. Eight, twenty seconds or a minute, what does that change – for me, nothing.”
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 76

1989 Was this the finest race in the history of the Tour de France?

It was certainly an epic battle between Greg LeMond and Laurent Fignon. LeMond snatched the victory by a whisper - eight seconds. But was Fignon robbed?

Did LeMond win because of his aerodynamic helmet?

Was it because Fignon suffered terrible saddle sores?

Should Guimard have complained about Lemond’s use of tri bars?

Resigned to a crushing defeat, Fignon conceded “It’s not the quantity that matters. Eight, twenty seconds or a minute, what does that change – for me, nothing.”

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 75
1988 The 1988 Tour was the shortest since Henri Desgrange reorganised the race in 1906, at only 3,286km (compare this with the longest ever at 5745km in 1926).
Over 22 stages, the average stage length was only 149km - this promised to be a race of speed. But was it too fast to be true?
Pedro Delgado tested positive with a drug banned by the Olympics committee but not yet banned by the UCI, and thus escaped sanction. He was tested a further ten times during the race and was clean.
Was he worthy of his win? Many thought he was and the peloton went on strike in support of him.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com


A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 75

1988 The 1988 Tour was the shortest since Henri Desgrange reorganised the race in 1906, at only 3,286km (compare this with the longest ever at 5745km in 1926).

Over 22 stages, the average stage length was only 149km - this promised to be a race of speed. But was it too fast to be true?

Pedro Delgado tested positive with a drug banned by the Olympics committee but not yet banned by the UCI, and thus escaped sanction. He was tested a further ten times during the race and was clean.

Was he worthy of his win? Many thought he was and the peloton went on strike in support of him.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 74
1987 Greg LeMond had every intention of defending his title, but being mistaken for a turkey hampered his plans.
He returned home to America to recover from an earlier injury and went hunting with his family, only to become separated during the shoot.
A member of the shooting party mistook LeMond shuffling around in the bushes for a turkey and shot him with over 50 pellets.

He survived – just. He lay in a coma for two weeks and miraculously returned to competitive cycling the following year.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 74

1987 Greg LeMond had every intention of defending his title, but being mistaken for a turkey hampered his plans.

He returned home to America to recover from an earlier injury and went hunting with his family, only to become separated during the shoot.

A member of the shooting party mistook LeMond shuffling around in the bushes for a turkey and shot him with over 50 pellets.

He survived – just. He lay in a coma for two weeks and miraculously returned to competitive cycling the following year.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 73
1986 This was a Tour of battles.
The yellow jersey changed hands with regularity – seven riders wore it in total.
Goddet made the course harder, and Hinault and LeMond rode an electrifying race.
Hinault had all but promised LeMond the win but in his last Tour he wasn’t going to go without drama. Stage after stage he attacked, pushing Lemond to the limit.
At l’Alpe d’Huez the pair fought a duel around every bend, finally crossing the line hand-in-hand at the summit.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com



A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 73

1986 This was a Tour of battles.

The yellow jersey changed hands with regularity – seven riders wore it in total.

Goddet made the course harder, and Hinault and LeMond rode an electrifying race.

Hinault had all but promised LeMond the win but in his last Tour he wasn’t going to go without drama. Stage after stage he attacked, pushing Lemond to the limit.

At l’Alpe d’Huez the pair fought a duel around every bend, finally crossing the line hand-in-hand at the summit.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 72
1985 Late one night as Bernard Hinault was enjoying a quiet night at home he was disturbed by a knock at the door.
A Dutch lady turned up his house in Brittany and commanded he make love to her immediately.
When he refused she began ranting and swearing profusely. Hinault said “I knew she was swearing because I recognized the same words the Dutch cyclists used on the road, usually towards me.” Ooh la la.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com


A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 72

1985 Late one night as Bernard Hinault was enjoying a quiet night at home he was disturbed by a knock at the door.

A Dutch lady turned up his house in Brittany and commanded he make love to her immediately.

When he refused she began ranting and swearing profusely. Hinault said “I knew she was swearing because I recognized the same words the Dutch cyclists used on the road, usually towards me.” Ooh la la.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 71
1984 After the stage at l’Alpe d’Huez a mysterious woman in black leathers approached Greg LeMond.
“Monsier LeMond. Monsieur Tapie would like to see you” she said. How could he resist?
She took him to meet Bernard Tapie, owner of the La Vie Claire team. There he was offered a contract beyond his wildest dreams, but what allegedly really seduced him was not just the money or the leather-clad brunette.

It was the lure of a set of state-of-the-art clipless bike pedals. That’s a bike geek for you.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 71

1984 After the stage at l’Alpe d’Huez a mysterious woman in black leathers approached Greg LeMond.

“Monsier LeMond. Monsieur Tapie would like to see you” she said. How could he resist?

She took him to meet Bernard Tapie, owner of the La Vie Claire team. There he was offered a contract beyond his wildest dreams, but what allegedly really seduced him was not just the money or the leather-clad brunette.

It was the lure of a set of state-of-the-art clipless bike pedals. That’s a bike geek for you.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 70
1983 One of the most revered songs produced in tribute to the Tour, Kraftwerk’s Tour de France was released in 1983.
The iconic sleeve design was adapted from an image that first appeared on a 1953 Hungarian postage stamp, one of a sport-themed set commemorating the opening the Népstadion (People’s Stadium) in Budapest.
Kraftwerk are huge cycling fans, and once spent the entire Tour following the peloton in one of the race officials’ vehicles.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 70

1983 One of the most revered songs produced in tribute to the Tour, Kraftwerk’s Tour de France was released in 1983.

The iconic sleeve design was adapted from an image that first appeared on a 1953 Hungarian postage stamp, one of a sport-themed set commemorating the opening the Népstadion (People’s Stadium) in Budapest.

Kraftwerk are huge cycling fans, and once spent the entire Tour following the peloton in one of the race officials’ vehicles.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 69
1982 Jacques Goddet, like his predecessor Desgrange, was a man with ambition.
Inspired by the phenomenal success of the football World Cup he was passionate about creating a global race, travelling the world every four years and reverting back to national teams.
He wrote an open letter to the cycling world stating “The Tour is absolutely ready to be globalised. The bicycle has conquered the world, the sport of cycling has plunged its roots deep into every continent and is followed by passionate fans.”
Too passionate to wait a long four years between global Tours, it would now appear.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 69

1982 Jacques Goddet, like his predecessor Desgrange, was a man with ambition.

Inspired by the phenomenal success of the football World Cup he was passionate about creating a global race, travelling the world every four years and reverting back to national teams.

He wrote an open letter to the cycling world stating “The Tour is absolutely ready to be globalised. The bicycle has conquered the world, the sport of cycling has plunged its roots deep into every continent and is followed by passionate fans.”

Too passionate to wait a long four years between global Tours, it would now appear.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 68
1981: Jonathan Boyer was the first ever American rider to enter the tour but was mocked by the cycling community for being a vegetarian, a rather novel thing in 1981.
He brought his own food to the race and at the start line he had nuts and fruit squirreled away in the pockets of his stars and stripes jersey.

Whilst others sneered, Eddie Merckx astutely predicted “America will be the land of the future of cycling.”
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 68

1981: Jonathan Boyer was the first ever American rider to enter the tour but was mocked by the cycling community for being a vegetarian, a rather novel thing in 1981.

He brought his own food to the race and at the start line he had nuts and fruit squirreled away in the pockets of his stars and stripes jersey.

Whilst others sneered, Eddie Merckx astutely predicted “America will be the land of the future of cycling.”

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 67
1980 When Hinault quit the tour because of tendonitis he tried to sneak out quietly, hoping for the minimum of fuss.
His withdrawal was announced at 10.30pm, long after the papers had gone to press, to give him time to make his escape to Lourdes.
The press went into a panic in pursuit of their hero and they finally hunted him down on his return home to Brittany.
They tied up his front door with a rope and blocked off the road with a car, forcing him to stop, but not before he threatened to ram their car unless they moved it.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 67

1980 When Hinault quit the tour because of tendonitis he tried to sneak out quietly, hoping for the minimum of fuss.

His withdrawal was announced at 10.30pm, long after the papers had gone to press, to give him time to make his escape to Lourdes.

The press went into a panic in pursuit of their hero and they finally hunted him down on his return home to Brittany.

They tied up his front door with a rope and blocked off the road with a car, forcing him to stop, but not before he threatened to ram their car unless they moved it.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 66
1979 Gone were some of the earlier archaic rules and regulations of Henri Desgrange, but Jacques Goddet could be a stubborn creature at times.
It took a strike led by Hinault to finally get the message across that the riders were unhappy with split stages. Travelling until midnight and starting as early as 5am after a mammoth stage the day before was too much.
1979 was the first year Goddet succumbed and abandoned split stages, to the relief of the whole peloton.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 66

1979 Gone were some of the earlier archaic rules and regulations of Henri Desgrange, but Jacques Goddet could be a stubborn creature at times.

It took a strike led by Hinault to finally get the message across that the riders were unhappy with split stages. Travelling until midnight and starting as early as 5am after a mammoth stage the day before was too much.

1979 was the first year Goddet succumbed and abandoned split stages, to the relief of the whole peloton.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 65
1978 Two hours after winning a Stage Michel Pollentier hadn’t visited the doping control (as every Stage winner must do immediately after the race is over).
When he was eventually found he had difficulty producing a urine sample.
Suspicious, the doctor pulled up his jersey and found a condom filled with urine strapped to his armpit with a thin tube running to his shorts.
Naturally, he was kicked off the Tour.
Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com

A Miscellany of Le Tour de France - Day 65

1978 Two hours after winning a Stage Michel Pollentier hadn’t visited the doping control (as every Stage winner must do immediately after the race is over).

When he was eventually found he had difficulty producing a urine sample.

Suspicious, the doctor pulled up his jersey and found a condom filled with urine strapped to his armpit with a thin tube running to his shorts.

Naturally, he was kicked off the Tour.

Every day until the Grand Depart, we’ll be sharing 100 stories from the last 100 years, a design per day until the greatest show on earth begins. You can see the full set of stories, and purchase postcards and prints, at www.thehandmadecyclist.com