1973 Tour de France

The 1973 Tour de France was the 60th edition of the Tour de France, one of cycling's Grand Tours. It took place between 30 June and 22 July, with 20 stages covering a distance of 4,090 km (2,541 mi). Eddy Merckx, winner of the previous four editions, did not start the 1973 Tour, partly to avoid angry French fans and partly to please his sponsor; instead he rode and won the 1973 Vuelta a España and the 1973 Giro d'Italia. In his absence, Luis Ocaña dominated the race by winning four mountain stages and two time trials. The end result being a margin of victory exceeding 15 minutes.

1973 Tour de France
Route of the 1973 Tour de France
Route of the 1973 Tour de France
Race details
Dates30 June – 22 July
Stages20 + Prologue, including six split stages
Distance4,090 km (2,541 mi)
Winning time122h 25' 34"
Results
Winner  Luis Ocaña (ESP) (Bic)
  Second  Bernard Thévenet (FRA) (Peugeot–BP–Michelin)
  Third  José Manuel Fuente (ESP) (Kas–Kaskol)

Points  Herman Van Springel (BEL) (Rokado–De Gribaldy)
  Mountains  Pedro Torres (ESP) (La Casera–Peña Bahamontes)
Combination  Joop Zoetemelk (NED) (Gitane–Frigécrème)
  Sprints  Marc Demeyer (BEL) (Flandria–Carpenter–Shimano)
  Combativity  Luis Ocaña (ESP) (Bic)
  Team Bic
  Team points Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson
← 1972
1974 →

In 1973, a new team classification was added: the team points classification, calculated by adding the three best stage rankings per team; it would be calculated until 1988.

TeamsEdit

The Italian teams did not join the 1973 Tour de France, because no top French cyclist rode the 1973 Giro d'Italia.[1] The Tour started with 12 teams, each with 11 cyclists.[2]

The teams entering the race were:[2]

Pre-race favouritesEdit

The winner of the previous four editions, Eddy Merckx had changed sponsors to the Italian Molteni. His contract said that he had to start in the 1973 Vuelta a España and the 1973 Giro d'Italia, and Merckx thought it was impossible to start in three grand tours in one year, so he stayed away from the Tour. Ocaña, who was in great shape, was now the main favourite, with Fuente, Poulidor and Thévenet as his biggest threats.[3][4] Ocaña was not the clear favourite; he had already crashed out of the Tour three times, and he was seen as fragile.[5][3] Zoetemelk had changed teams, because he did not have the full support of his team leader.[5] Among the Italian riders absent were world champion Marino Basso and former Tour winner Felice Gimondi.[1]

Route and stagesEdit

After the 1972 Tour de France, there were rumours that the 1973 Tour would become easier, to suit French cyclist Cyrille Guimard better. However, when the 1973 Tour route was announced in December 1972, the organisation had included three more mountains compared to 1972.[6] The race started on 30 June, and had two rest days, in Divonne-les-Bains and Bolquères Pyrenees 2000 [fr].[7] The highest point of elevation in the race was 2,556 m (8,386 ft) at the summit tunnel of the Col du Galibier mountain pass on stage 8.[8][9]

Stage characteristics and winners[4][7][10][11]
Stage Date Course Distance Type Winner
P 30 June Scheveningen (Netherlands) 7.1 km (4.4 mi)   Individual time trial   Joop Zoetemelk (NED)
1a 1 July Scheveningen (Netherlands) to Rotterdam (Netherlands) 84 km (52 mi)   Plain stage   Willy Teirlinck (BEL)
1b Rotterdam (Netherlands) to Sint-Niklaas (Belgium) 137.5 km (85.4 mi)   Plain stage   José Catieau (FRA)
2a 2 July Sint-Niklaas (Belgium) 12.4 km (7.7 mi)   Team time trial  Watney–Maes Pils
2b Sint-Niklaas (Belgium) to Roubaix 138 km (86 mi)   Plain stage   Eddy Verstraeten (BEL)
3 3 July Roubaix to Reims 226 km (140 mi)   Plain stage   Cyrille Guimard (FRA)
4 4 July Reims to Nancy 214 km (133 mi)   Plain stage   Joop Zoetemelk (NED)
5 5 July Nancy to Mulhouse 188 km (117 mi)   Stage with mountain(s)   Walter Godefroot (BEL)
6 6 July Mulhouse to Divonne-les-Bains 244.5 km (151.9 mi)   Stage with mountain(s)   Jean-Pierre Danguillaume (FRA)
7 July Divonne-les-Bains Rest day
7a 8 July Divonne-les-Bains to Gaillard 86.5 km (53.7 mi)   Stage with mountain(s)   Luis Ocaña (ESP)
7b Gaillard to Méribel 150.5 km (93.5 mi)   Stage with mountain(s)   Bernard Thévenet (FRA)
8 9 July Moûtiers to Les Orres 237.5 km (147.6 mi)   Stage with mountain(s)   Luis Ocaña (ESP)
9 10 July Embrun to Nice 234.5 km (145.7 mi)   Stage with mountain(s)   Vicente López Carril (ESP)
10 11 July Nice to Aubagne 222.5 km (138.3 mi)   Stage with mountain(s)   Michael Wright (GBR)
11 12 July Montpellier to Argelès-sur-Mer 238 km (148 mi)   Plain stage   Barry Hoban (GBR)
12a 13 July Perpignan to Thuir 28.3 km (17.6 mi)   Individual time trial   Luis Ocaña (ESP)
12b Thuir to Bolquères Pyrenees 2000 [fr] 76 km (47 mi)   Stage with mountain(s)   Lucien Van Impe (BEL)
14 July Bolquères Pyrenees 2000 [fr] Rest day
13 15 July Bourg-Madame to Luchon 235 km (146 mi)   Stage with mountain(s)   Luis Ocaña (ESP)
14 16 July Luchon to Pau 227.5 km (141.4 mi)   Stage with mountain(s)   Pedro Torres (ESP)
15 17 July Pau to Fleurance 137 km (85 mi)   Plain stage   Wilfried David (BEL)
16a 18 July Fleurance to Bordeaux 210 km (130 mi)   Plain stage   Walter Godefroot (BEL)
16b Bordeaux 12.4 km (7.7 mi)   Individual time trial   Joaquim Agostinho (POR)
17 19 July Sainte-Foy-la-Grande to Brive-la-Gaillarde 248 km (154 mi)   Plain stage   Claude Tollet (FRA)
18 20 July Brive-la-Gaillarde to Puy de Dôme 216.5 km (134.5 mi)   Stage with mountain(s)   Luis Ocaña (ESP)
19 21 July Bourges to Versailles 233.5 km (145.1 mi)   Plain stage   Barry Hoban (GBR)
20a 22 July Versailles 16 km (9.9 mi)   Individual time trial   Luis Ocaña (ESP)
20b Versailles to Paris 89 km (55 mi)   Plain stage   Bernard Thévenet (FRA)
Total 4,090 km (2,541 mi)[12]

Race overviewEdit

 
Joop Zoetemelk after he won the opening prologue time trial in Scheveningen, Netherlands
 
The finish of stage 1a in Rotterdam, Netherlands, won by Willy Teirlinck

Zoetemelk won the opening prologue, one second ahead of Poulidor. In the first part of the next stage, Teirlinck won and took over the lead. Ocaña and Herman Van Springel fell down when a dog crossed the road, but both suffered no serious damage.[5] In the second part of that stage, Van Springel bridged the gap to Catieau, who had escaped. Van Springel did all the work to stay away, while Catieau did not help his team captain's rival. They stayed away until the end of the stage, where Catieau won the sprint, and Van Springel became the new race leader.[5]

In the third stage, a group with Guimard and Ocana escaped. Van Springel, Zoetemelk, Fuentes, Thévenet and Poulidor were not in that group, and had to chase them. The group stayed away, Guimard won the sprint and Catieau became the race leader. More important for the final result was that Ocaña won more than two minutes on Zoetemelk, and more than seven minutes on Fuente.[5][13]

In stage seven, when the first mountains were climbed, Ocaña attacked, and only Zoetemelk could follow. A few kilometers from the summit, Zoetemelk had to let Ocaña go, and Ocaña finished solo. Ocaña became the new race leader, almost three minutes ahead of Zoetemelk.[5] In the eighth stage, Ocaña and Fuente both attacked. Ocaña and Fuente did not like each other, and when Fuente stopped working, Ocaña was angry, especially when Fuente passed him just before the top of the Izoard to steal the points for the mountain classification. When Fuente had a flat tire, Ocaña did not wait for him, and left him behind, beating him by one minute at the finish line. All the others were far behind: Thévenet and Martinez followed after seven minutes, the other pre-race favourites after twenty minutes.[5][14]

In the thirteenth stage, Poulidor crashed, and was taken away with a helicopter.[5] In the sixteenth stage, the cyclists were slower than expected, and finished one hour after the latest time schedule. The train that they should have taken had already left, and they had to use buses.[5]

In the time trial in stage 17, Fuente lost his second place in the general classification to Thévenet. Fuente tried to take it back in the mountain stage 18, but he failed and even lost some time.[5]

DopingEdit

Three cyclists tested positive during the 1973 Tour de France: Barry Hoban, after the 9th stage;[15] Claude Baud, after the 13th stage;[16] and Michel Roques, after the 18th stage.[17] All three received a fine of 1000 Swiss Francs, one-month suspension and ten minutes penalty time in the general classification.

Classification leadership and minor prizesEdit

 
Luis Ocaña's yellow jersey of the 1973 Tour

There were several classifications in the 1973 Tour de France, three of them awarding jerseys to their leaders.[18] The most important was the general classification, calculated by adding each cyclist's finishing times on each stage. The cyclist with the least accumulated time was the race leader, identified by the yellow jersey; the winner of this classification is considered the winner of the Tour.[19]

Additionally, there was a points classification, where cyclists got points for finishing among the best in a stage finish, or in intermediate sprints. The cyclist with the most points lead the classification, and was identified with a green jersey.[20]

There was also a mountains classification. The organisation had categorised some climbs as either first, second, third, or fourth-category; points for this classification were won by the first cyclists that reached the top of these climbs first, with more points available for the higher-categorised climbs. The cyclist with the most points lead the classification, but was not identified with a jersey in 1973.[21]

Another classification was the combination classification. This classification was calculated as a combination of the other classifications, its leader wore the white jersey.[22]

The fifth individual classification was the intermediate sprints classification. This classification had similar rules as the points classification, but only points were awarded on intermediate sprints. In 1973, this classification had no associated jersey.[23]

For the team classification, the times of the best three cyclists per team on each stage were added; the leading team was the team with the lowest total time. The riders in the team that led this classification were identified by yellow caps.[23] For the first time, there was also a team points classification. Cyclists received points according to their finishing position on each stage, with the first rider receiving one point. The first three finishers of each team had their points combined, and the team with the fewest points led the classification. The riders of the team leading this classification wore green caps.[23]

In addition, there was a combativity award, in which a jury composed of journalists gave points after certain stages to the cyclist they considered most combative. The split stages each had a combined winner.[24] At the conclusion of the Tour, Luis Ocaña won the overall super-combativity award, also decided by journalists.[7] The Souvenir Henri Desgrange was given to the first rider to pass the memorial to Tour founder Henri Desgrange near the summit of the Col du Galibier on stage 8. This prize was won by Ocaña.[25]

Classification leadership by stage[26][27]
Stage Winner General classification
 
Points classification
 
Mountains classification[a] Combination classification
 
Intermediate sprints classification Team classifications Combativity award Elegant award Amiable award
By time By points
P Joop Zoetemelk Joop Zoetemelk Joop Zoetemelk no award no award no award Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson no award no award no award
1a Willy Teirlinck Willy Teirlinck Willy Teirlinck Willy Teirlinck Willy Teirlinck Sonolor Sonolor José Catieau Ludo Delcroix Jan Krekels
1b José Catieau Herman Van Springel Herman Van Springel Bic Rokado–De Gribaldy
2a Watney–Maes Pils Tino Tabak Willy Teirlinck Joël Millard
2b Eddy Verstraeten Frans Verbeeck Marc Demeyer
3 Cyrille Guimard José Catieau Cyrille Guimard Willy De Geest Willy De Geest Luis Ocaña Jean-Pierre Danguillaume José Catieau
4 Joop Zoetemelk Herman Van Springel Antonio Menéndez Michel Périn Jean-Claude Blocher
5 Walter Godefroot Charly Grosskost Charly Grosskost Willy Abbeloos Juan Zurano
6 Jean-Pierre Danguillaume Pedro Torres Raymond Riotte Lucien Aimar Georges Pintens
7a Luis Ocaña Luis Ocaña Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson Walter Godefroot Leif Mortensen Gérard Moneyron
7b Bernard Thévenet Lucien Van Impe
8 Luis Ocaña Luis Ocaña Luis Ocaña Michael Wright Pedro Torres
9 Vicente López Carril José Manuel Fuente José Manuel Fuente Vicente López Carril Yves Hézard Bernard Thévenet
10 Michael Wright Raymond Riotte Roger Gilson Joaquim Agostinho
11 Barry Hoban Joop Zoetemelk no award Jean-Claude Largeau Jean-Jacques Sanquer
12a Luis Ocaña Lucien Van Impe Jacques Esclassan Michel Pollentier
12b Lucien Van Impe
13 Luis Ocaña Joop Zoetemelk Bernard Labourdette Vicente López Carril
14 Pedro Torres Joop Zoetemelk Jack Mourioux Raymond Riotte
15 Wilfried David Wilfried David Daniel Ducreux René Grelin
16a Walter Godefroot Bernard Thévenet Régis Ovion Herman Van Springel
16b Joaquim Agostinho
17 Claude Tollet Pedro Torres Jacques-André Hochart Jürgen Tschan Michel Roques
18 Luis Ocaña Jean-Claude Blocher Lucien Van Impe Ferdinand Julien
19 Barry Hoban Marc Demeyer Johny Schleck Christian Blain
20a Luis Ocaña Bernard Thévenet Luis Ocaña Guy Santy
20b Bernard Thévenet
Final Luis Ocaña Herman Van Springel Pedro Torres Joop Zoetemelk Marc Demeyer Bic Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson Luis Ocaña Michel Périn Willy Teirlinck

Final standingsEdit

Legend
  Denotes the winner of the general classification   Denotes the winner of the points classification
  Denotes the winner of the combination classification

General classificationEdit

Final general classification (1–10)[28]
Rank Rider Team Time
1   Luis Ocaña (ESP)   Bic 122h 25' 34"
2   Bernard Thévenet (FRA) Peugeot–BP–Michelin + 15' 51"
3   José Manuel Fuente (ESP) Kas–Kaskol + 17' 15"
4   Joop Zoetemelk (NED)   Gitane–Frigécrème + 26' 22"
5   Lucien Van Impe (BEL) Sonolor + 30' 20"
6   Herman Van Springel (BEL)   Rokado–De Gribaldy + 32' 01"
7   Michel Périn (FRA) Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson + 33' 02"
8   Joaquim Agostinho (POR) Bic + 35' 51"
9   Vicente López Carril (ESP) Kas–Kaskol + 36' 18"
10   Régis Ovion (FRA) Peugeot–BP–Michelin + 36' 59"

Points classificationEdit

Final points classification (1–10)[4][29]
Rank Rider Team Points
1   Herman Van Springel (BEL)   Rokado–De Gribaldy 187
2   Joop Zoetemelk (NED)   Gitane–Frigécrème 168
3   Luis Ocaña (ESP)   Bic 145
4   Bernard Thévenet (FRA) Peugeot–BP–Michelin 139
5   Walter Godefroot (BEL) Flandria–Carpenter–Shimano 139
6   Barry Hoban (GBR) Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson 110
7   Gerard Vianen (NED) Gitane–Frigécrème 110
8   Lucien Van Impe (BEL) Sonolor 109
9   Mariano Martínez (FRA) Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson 89
10   Jacques Esclassan (FRA) Peugeot–BP–Michelin 89

Mountains classificationEdit

Final mountains classification (1–10)[4][29]
Rank Rider Team Points
1   Pedro Torres (ESP) La Casera–Peña Bahamontes 225
2   José Manuel Fuente (ESP) Kas–Kaskol 216
3   Luis Ocaña (ESP)   Bic 192
4   Bernard Thévenet (FRA) Peugeot–BP–Michelin 119
5   Lucien Van Impe (BEL) Sonolor 107
6   Joop Zoetemelk (NED)   Gitane–Frigécrème 83
7   Vicente López Carril (ESP) Kas–Kaskol 80
8   Joaquim Agostinho (POR) Bic 46
9   Francisco Galdós (ESP) Kas–Kaskol 46
10   Mariano Martínez (FRA) Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson 38

Combination classificationEdit

Final combination classification (1–6)[29][30]
Rank Rider Team Points
1   Joop Zoetemelk (NED)   Gitane–Frigécrème 20
2   Lucien Van Impe (BEL) Sonolor 26
3   Bernard Thévenet (FRA) Peugeot–BP–Michelin 33
4   Herman Van Springel (BEL)   Rokado–De Gribaldy 50
5   Fernando Mendes (POR) Flandria–Carpenter–Shimano 55
6   José Catieau (FRA) Bic 82

Intermediate sprints classificationEdit

Final intermediate sprints classification (1–10)[31]
Rank Rider Team Points
1   Marc Demeyer (BEL) Flandria–Carpenter–Shimano 105
2   Barry Hoban (GBR) Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson 70
3   Willy Teirlinck (BEL) Sonolor 60
4   Raymond Riotte (FRA) Sonolor 34
5   Fernando Mendes (POR) Flandria–Carpenter–Shimano 18
  Robert Mintkiewicz (FRA) Sonolor
7   Régis Delépine (FRA) Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson 13
8   Joop Zoetemelk (NED)   Gitane–Frigécrème 12
9   Jacques Esclassan (FRA) Peugeot–BP–Michelin 11
10   Lucien Van Impe (BEL) Sonolor 10
  Vicente López Carril (ESP) Kas–Kaskol

Team classificationEdit

Final team classification (1–10)[29]
Rank Team Time
1 Bic 369h 31' 55"
2 Peugeot–BP–Michelin + 20' 23"
3 Kas–Kaskol + 20' 42"
4 Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson + 23' 04"
5 Rokado–De Gribaldy + 1h 40' 42"
6 Sonolor + 1h 45' 56"
7 Gitane–Frigécrème + 1h 58' 57"
8 La Casera–Peña Bahamontes + 2h 01' 50"
9 Flandria–Carpenter–Shimano + 2h 09' 21"
10 De Kova–Lejeune + 3h 09' 21"

Team points classificationEdit

Final team points classification (1–10)[32][33]
Rank Team Points
1 Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson 868
2 Peugeot–BP–Michelin 1171
3 Rokado–De Gribaldy 1554
4 Bic 1565
5 Flandria–Carpenter–Shimano 1596
6 Sonolor 1687
7 Gitane–Frigécrème 1751
8 Kas–Kaskol 1863
9 La Casera–Peña Bahamontes 2338
10 Canada Dry–Gazelle 3217

NotesEdit

  1. ^ No jersey was awarded to the leader of the mountains classification until a white jersey with red polka dots was introduced in 1975.[21]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Italianen mijden Tour de France". Nieuwsblad van het Noorden (in Dutch). De krant van toen. 4 June 1973. p. 21. Retrieved 18 March 2011.
  2. ^ a b "The history of the Tour de France – Year 1973 – The starters". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Retrieved 2 April 2020.
  3. ^ a b Fotheringham, Alasdair (30 July 2014). "Another Tour of Absences: Tour de France 1973". Cyclingnews.com. Immediate Media Company. Retrieved 5 March 2019.
  4. ^ a b c d "60ème Tour de France 1973" [60th Tour de France 1973]. Mémoire du cyclisme (in French). Retrieved 6 April 2020.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j McGann & McGann 2008, pp. 73–81.
  6. ^ "Tour de France 1973 wordt zwaar karwei". Leeuwarder Courant (in Dutch). De krant van toen. 14 December 1972. p. 29. Retrieved 18 March 2011.
  7. ^ a b c Augendre 2016, p. 64.
  8. ^ Augendre 2016, pp. 177–178.
  9. ^ Schoonderwalt, Frans van (29 June 1973). "Formatie zonder zelfvertrouwen" [Formation without self-confidence]. de Volkskrant (in Dutch). p. 11 – via Delpher.
  10. ^ Zwegers, Arian. "Tour de France GC top ten". CVCC. Archived from the original on 10 June 2009. Retrieved 31 August 2010.
  11. ^ "The history of the Tour de France – Year 1973 – The stage winners". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Retrieved 2 April 2020.
  12. ^ Augendre 2016, p. 109.
  13. ^ Béoutis, Didier (23 November 2008). "Luis Ocaña sur le pavés de Querenaing - Tour de France 1973" (in French). Mémoire du cyclisme. Archived from the original on 15 September 2011. Retrieved 18 March 2011.
  14. ^ Béoutis, Didier (23 November 2008). "Luis Ocaña écrase le Tour - Tour de France 1973" (in French). Mémoire du cyclisme. Archived from the original on 14 September 2011. Retrieved 18 March 2011.
  15. ^ "Hoban betrapt". Nieuwsblad van het Noorden (in Dutch). 16 July 1973. p. 19 – via De Krant van Toen.
  16. ^ "Tweede dopinggeval in Tour de France". Leeuwarder Courant (in Dutch). 20 July 1973. p. 19 – via De Krant van Toen.
  17. ^ "Dopinggeval". Leeuwarder Courant (in Dutch). 24 July 1973. p. 13 – via De Krant van Toen.
  18. ^ Nauright & Parrish 2012, pp. 452–455.
  19. ^ Nauright & Parrish 2012, pp. 452–453.
  20. ^ Nauright & Parrish 2012, pp. 453–454.
  21. ^ a b Nauright & Parrish 2012, p. 454.
  22. ^ Nauright & Parrish 2012, pp. 454–455.
  23. ^ a b c Nauright & Parrish 2012, p. 455.
  24. ^ van den Akker 2018, pp. 211–216.
  25. ^ "Van km tot km" [From km to km]. De Stem (in Dutch). 10 July 1973. p. 9 – via Krantenbank Zeeland.
  26. ^ "De Ronde in cijfers" [The Tour in numbers]. Gazet van Antwerpen (in Dutch). Concentra. 23 July 1973. Retrieved 16 April 2018.
  27. ^ van den Akker, Pieter. "Informatie over de Tour de France van 1973" [Information about the Tour de France from 1973]. TourDeFranceStatistieken.nl (in Dutch). Archived from the original on 2 March 2019. Retrieved 2 March 2019.
  28. ^ a b "The history of the Tour de France – Year 1973 – Stage 20.02 Versailles > Paris". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Retrieved 2 April 2020.
  29. ^ a b c d "Clasificaciones oficiales" (PDF). Mundo Deportivo (in Spanish). 23 July 1973. p. 19. Archived (PDF) from the original on 6 October 2019.
  30. ^ Saunders 1973, "Final combine classification".
  31. ^ Saunders 1973, "Final hot spot sprint classification".
  32. ^ "Noteer ook..." Gazet van Antwerpen. Concentra. 23 July 1973. p. 18. Retrieved 16 April 2018.
  33. ^ Saunders 1973, "Final team points classification".

BibliographyEdit

External linksEdit

  Media related to 1973 Tour de France at Wikimedia Commons