The history of the Tour de France

Year 1957

THE STORY

  • After a lackluster showing in 1956, the French national team dominated the 1957 edition. Sprinter André Darrigade grabbed the yellow jersey early, then passed it off to his teammates René Privat and Jean Forestier. But it was their young star Jacques Anquetil who grabbed the yellow jersey for good. The recently crowned hour record holder showed he could also climb, as he rolled to his first of five historic Tour victories.

  • If some doubted the dominance of the French national team going into the race, few questioned their superiority after the event. All tolled, five of their riders won no less than 13 stage victories, plus the yellow and green jerseys.

  • Marcel Bidot: "In surmounting a severe failure in the Aubisque, Jacques Anquetil showed he had the makings and temperament of a great rider.” Last rider: Million (56th) at 4 h 41 min. 11 sec.

  • The French national team’s supremacy, its rejuvenation brought about by coach Marcel Bidot after Bobet’s withdrawal, and Jacques Anquetil smashing debuts. Five towns host a stage start or finish for the first time.

  • The Soviet Union launches the first satellite, Sputnik I, into space; Jack Kerouac publishes the cult novel "On the Road"; French high-fashion couturier Christian Dior dies; John Coltrane records legendary album "Blue Trane"; Leonard Berstein directs "West Side Story."

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