The history of the Tour de France

Year 1962


  • As in 1961, Jacques Anquetil won the opening time trial. But this year he would have to wait until the second time trial to grab the yellow jersey. With tough early challenges from Germany's Rudi Altig and Belgium's Rik Van Looy, not to mention climbers like Federico Bahamontès and neophyte Raymond Poulidor, Anquetil rode defensively throughout much of the race. But when he finally slipped into the yellow jersey with only two stages remaining, there was little to stop him from winning his third Tour.

  • Undoubtedly one of the revelations of the 1962 Tour was a certain Raymond Poulidor. The rising French star had already shown himself to be a class rider by winning Milan-San Remo classic as well as the French championships a year earlier. And in his Tour debut he showed he had the makings of being a great Tour rider. Despite starting the race with a cast on left hand, Poulidor managed to win the tough mountain stage from Briançon to Aix-les-Bains and finish third overall.

  • Marcel Bidot: "I truly regret that Antonin Magne was opposed to the selection of Poulidor in the French national team last year. Raymond would have made a pact with Anquetil and…he would have won one or several Tours because together, they would have dominated cycling for ten years." At km 100, in the Lyon - Nevers stage, the race goes through Le Guidon (the handlebars), Bernard Thevenet’s birthplace. Last rider: Marcaletti (94th) at 4 h 29 min. 23 sec.

  • First episode in the Anquetil - Poulidor match. Trade team structure returns; Tour climbs the Restefond Pass, the highest summit in Tour history for the first time.

  • Solzhenitsyn's "One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovitch" is published; American writer William Faulkner dies; Algeria proclaims independence; Marilyn Monroe is found dead from an overdose; first James Bond movie is released.

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