The history of the Tour de France

Year 1984

THE STORY

  • Laurent Fignon rode in a state of grace as he easily showed his 1983 victory was no fluke. After his teammate Vincent Barteau held the yellow jersey through the opening stages, Fignon took over in the mountains. So strong was Fignon, that Bernard Hinault--who was making his comeback--finished 10 minutes behind in second place. All tolled, the young French champion won two mountain stages as well as the final time trial.

  • Luis Herrera wins the first-ever South-American victory in l'Alpe d'Huez. According to Fignon's coach Cyrille Guimard, the real revelation of the 1984 Tour was the American rider Greg LeMond. In effect, Fignon's teammate and the recently crowned world champion finished in third place overall to become the first American ever on the podium. And that performance came after LeMond suffered with a cold throughout much of the race.

  • Fignon confides in La Plagne: "My shape is such that I can ride at the maximum without risks. Racing, in these conditions, is enchanting". American actor Dustin Hoffman follows a couple stages for a movie that would have been called "The yellow jersey.” Last rider: Glaus (124th), 4 h 1 min. 17 sec. behind.

  • Fignon unchallenged. Greg LeMond is the first American ever on the tour de France’s podium. Introduction of the red jersey for the leader of the intermediate sprint-prime category; for the first time since 1969 riders cover a stage over 300 kilometers(Nantes-Bordeaux).

  • Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi is assassinated; the first test-tube baby is born in Melbourne; Michael Jackson's "Thriller" album tops 20,000,000 in sales; Terry Gilliam directs the film "Brazil"; Milos Forman directs "Amadeus"; Chinese-American architect Ming Pei designs the controversial pyramid for the Louvre.

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