Tuesday 27 December 2011

Daily Cycling Facts 27.12.11

Today is the anniversary of the birth of Maurice de Waele, winner of the 1929 Tour de France - a victory that in the eyes of Henri Desgrange, who said "My Tour has been won by a corpse," was down to trickery (which certainly did occur, but large numbers of punctures and illnesses certainly had an influence) and resulted in his decision to adopt national teams rather than trade teams in an attempt to prevent team tactics. He died on the 14th of February 1952, aged 55.

Happy birthday to José Pérez Francés, third place winner in the 1963 Tour de France behind Jacques Anquetil and Federico Bahamontes. He was twice Spanish Road Champion (1960 and 1963), won three stages in the Vuelta a Espana and came 2nd overall in 1968, came 5th overall in the 1968 Giro d'Italia and 2nd in the 1963 Dauphiné Libéré where he won Stage 3.  Francés was born in Peñacastillo, Spain on this day in 1936.

Happy birthday to Pascal Simon who won the maillot jaune following Stage 10 of the 1983 Tour de France. The next day, he crashed and broke his shoulder - yet remained in the race for another six days. They don't make 'em like that anymore. Well, except Jens Voigt perhaps. Simon also won the Tour de l'Avenir in 1981.

Sabine Spitz
(image credit: Graham Dean CC BY 2.0)
Sabine Spitz, the German mountain biker who became World Cross Country Champion in 2003 and won a gold medal in the cross country event at the 2008 Olympics (and a bronze in the same event in 2004), was born on this day 1971 in Herrischried.

More birthdays: Klaas Balk (Dutch Olympian track cyclist, 63), Dennis Brooks (Cayman Isles road cyclist, 37), William Clay (Japan-born American track cyclist, 38), Dashjamtsyn Mönkhbat (Mongolian road and TT cyclist, 50), Péter Kusztor (Hungarian road cyclist, 27), Václav Machek (Czech track cyclist, 1956 Olympic silver medalist, born 1925), Englebert Opdebeeck (Dutch road and TT cyclist, 65), Dimo Angelov Tonchev (Bulgarian track cyclist, 59), John Vande Velde (American ex-professional cyclist and father of Christian, 63), Marian Turowski (Polish track cyclist, 47), Charles Westerholm (Finnish-born American cyclist, born 1897, died 1977).

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