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List of British cyclists who have led the Tour de France general classification

Yellow jersey with Leroux-Gitane insignia
The 1962 Tour de France design of the yellow jersey, as worn by Tom Simpson on stage thirteen as leader of the general classification

Since the establishment of the competition in 1903, eight British riders have led the general classification in the Tour de France at the end of a stage during one of the 103 editions of the Tours de France. As of the end of the 2018 Tour, this equals a total of 101 stages.

HistoryEdit

One of the three Grand Tours of professional road bicycle racing, the Tour de France is the most famous road cycling event in the world, and is held annually around the month of July. Although all riders compete together, the winners of the Tour are divided into classifications, each best known by the coloured jersey that is worn by the leader of it; the general classification (GC), represented by the yellow jersey (French: maillot jaune), is for the overall leader in terms of the lowest time. The other individual classifications in the Tour are the points classification, also known as the sprinters' classification (green jersey), the mountains classification (polka dot jersey), and the young rider classification (white jersey).

The first British rider to wear the yellow jersey was Tom Simpson in 1962, after he finished in the leading group of riders on stage twelve from Pau to Saint-Gaudens. He lost the lead in the following stage's mountain time trial.[1] Thirty-two years later, at the 1994 Tour, Chris Boardman won the opening prologue in Lille. He wore yellow for the next three stages until the end of the team time trial on stage three.[2] On the sixth stage from Cherbourg to Rennes, Sean Yates then took the lead of the race, holding yellow for one stage.[3] In 1997, Boardman again took the yellow jersey after he won the prologue in Rouen. He lost it in the following stage that, although finished in a bunch sprint, awarded a time bonus to the winner. He came back the next year to win the prologue in Dublin.[2] He held it until stage two when he crashed out of the race.[4] In 2000, David Millar won the opening individual time trial in Futuroscope to hold yellow until stage four's team time trial.[5]

The next British rider to lead the general classification was Bradley Wiggins in 2012, after he placed second behind compatriot and teammate Chris Froome on stage seven's summit finish at the La Planche des Belles Filles ski station. Wiggins held the yellow jersey until the end of the Tour to become the first Briton to win the race. Froome came in second overall,[6] and the following year went one better and won the Tour after gaining and holding the lead to the end after his victory on stage eight's mountain course from Castres to Ax 3 Domaines.[7] After he was forced to retire due to an injury in 2014, Froome came back in 2015, and on stage three's summit finish at Huy claimed the yellow jersey,[8] although he lost it the following day after a solo win from German rider Tony Martin. Froome took the yellow jersey back from Martin after he retired from the Tour after stage six. No rider wore yellow for the seven stage as Martin had finished the stage, so Froome held it after the seventh;[9] he defended it until the conclusion of the race to win his second Tour. He also claimed the mountains classification, the first time a rider had won both since Eddy Merckx in 1970.[10] In 2016, Mark Cavendish won the opening stage's bunch sprint at Utah Beach to become the seventh British rider to wear yellow.[11] He lost the jersey after the next stage's uphill sprint finish.[12] Froome's solo victory after the descent into Bagnères-de-Luchon saw him take the race lead,[13] which he held to the end of the Tour and win his third title.[14]

ListEdit

"Obtained" refers to the date and stage where the rider secured the lead of the general classification at the finish; the rider would first wear the yellow jersey in the stage after, where he would start the day as leader. "Relinquished" refers to the date and stage where the rider lost the lead, and therefore was not wearing the yellow jersey the following stage.
Year Name Team Obtained Relinquished Final GC Notes Ref
Stage Date Stage Date
1962 Tom Simpson Gitane–Leroux–Dunlop–R. Geminiani 12, Pau to Saint-Gaudens 5 July 1962 13, Luchon to Superbagnères 6 July 1962 6th (+ 17' 09") [15]
1994 Chris Boardman GAN P,[n 1] Lille 2 July 1994 3, Calais to Eurotunnel 5 July 1994 DNF-11 [n 2] [16]
1994 Sean Yates Motorola 6, Cherbourg to Rennes 8 July 1994 7, Rennes to Futuroscope 9 July 1994 71st (+ 2h 04' 45")
1997 Chris Boardman GAN P,[n 1] Rouen 5 July 1997 1, Rouen to Forges-les-Eaux 6 July 1997 DNF-13 [n 2] [17]
1998 Chris Boardman GAN P,[n 1] Dublin 11 July 1998 2, Enniscorthy to Cork 13 July 1998 DNF-3 [n 2] [18]
2000 David Millar Cofidis 1, Futuroscope 1 July 2003 4, Nantes to Saint-Nazaire 4 July 2003 62nd (+ 2h 13' 03") [n 3] [19]
2012 Bradley Wiggins Team Sky 7, Tomblaine to La Planche des Belles Filles 7 July 2012
(winner)
1st [20]
2013 Chris Froome Team Sky 8, Castres to Ax 3 Domaines 7 July 2013
(winner)
1st [21]
2015 Chris Froome Team Sky 3, Antwerp to Huy 6 July 2015 4, Seraing to Cambrai 7 July 2015 1st [n 4] [22]
7, Livarot to Fougères 10 July 2015
(winner)
2016 Mark Cavendish Team Dimension Data 1, Mont Saint-Michel to Sainte-Marie-du-Mont 2 July 2016 2, Saint-Lô to Cherbourg-Octeville 3 July 2016 DNS-17 [n 2] [23]
Chris Froome Team Sky 8, Pau to Bagnères-de-Luchon 9 July 2016
(winner)
1st
2017 Geraint Thomas Team Sky 1, Düsseldorf 1 July 2017 5, Vittel to La Planche des Belles Filles 5 July 2017 DNF-9
Chris Froome 5, Vittel to La Planche des Belles Filles 5 July 2017 12, Pau to Peyragudes 13 July 2017 1st
14, Blagnac to Rodez 15 July 2017
(winner)
2018 Geraint Thomas Team Sky 11, Albertville to La Rosière 18 July 2018 (winner) 1st

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ a b c "P" refers to the prologue stage, most commonly an individual time trial (as it was in 1994, 1997 and 1998). The prologue is not considered to be a numbered stage of the Tour de France, and is followed the next day by Stage "1"; therefore, the prologue is occasionally also designated as Stage "0".
  2. ^ a b c d Also won the green jersey as the winner of opening stage.
  3. ^ Also won both the green jersey and the white jersey as the winner of opening stage.
  4. ^ Finished first in the mountains classification at the completion of the Tour.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ MacLeary, John (3 July 2014). "British riders to have worn the leader's yellow jersey at the Tour de France: Tom Simpson in 1962". The Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group. Archived from the original on 18 December 2015. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  2. ^ a b MacLeary, John (3 July 2014). "British riders to have worn the leader's yellow jersey at the Tour de France: Chris Boardman in 1994, 1997 and 1998". The Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group. Archived from the original on 21 September 2016. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  3. ^ MacLeary, John (3 July 2014). "British riders to have worn the leader's yellow jersey at the Tour de France: Sean Yates in 1994". The Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group. Archived from the original on 11 July 2014. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  4. ^ "Boardman crashes out". BBC Sport. 13 July 1998. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  5. ^ MacLeary, John (3 July 2014). "British riders to have worn the leader's yellow jersey at the Tour de France: David Millar in 2000". The Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group. Archived from the original on 11 July 2014. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  6. ^ MacLeary, John (1 July 2014). "British riders to have worn the leader's yellow jersey at the Tour de France: Team Sky's Sir Bradley Wiggins in 2012". The Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group. Archived from the original on 11 October 2016. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  7. ^ MacLeary, John (3 July 2014). "British riders to have worn the leader's yellow jersey at the Tour de France: Team Sky's Chris Froome in 2013". The Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group. Archived from the original on 11 October 2016. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  8. ^ Woodpower, Zeb (6 July 2015). "Rodriguez wins on the Mur de Huy". Cyclingnews.com. Immediate Media Company. Archived from the original on 22 October 2015. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  9. ^ MacMichael, Simon (7 July 2015). "Tour de France Stage 4: Tony Martin attacks to finally get into yellow". road.cc. Farrelly Atkinson. Archived from the original on 8 July 2015. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  10. ^ "Chris Froome completes historic British win". BBC Sport. BBC. 25 July 2015. Archived from the original on 28 July 2015. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  11. ^ Cossins, Peter (2 July 2016). "Cavendish wins opening stage". Cyclingnews.com. Immediate Media Company. Archived from the original on 16 August 2016. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  12. ^ Cossins, Peter (3 July 2016). "Sagan wins stage 2". Cyclingnews.com. Immediate Media Company. Archived from the original on 16 August 2016. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  13. ^ Cossins, Peter (9 July 2016). "Froome attacks descent to win stage to Luchon". Cyclingnews.com. Immediate Media Company. Archived from the original on 16 August 2016. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  14. ^ Wynn, Nigel (24 July 2016). "Chris Froome wins 2016 Tour de France as André Greipel takes final stage". Cycling Weekly. Time Inc. UK. Archived from the original on 26 July 2016. Retrieved 20 September 2016.
  15. ^ "The history of the Tour de France – Year 1962 – The jerseys of the stage". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Archived from the original on 2 September 2016. Retrieved 4 July 2017.
  16. ^ "The history of the Tour de France – Year 1994 – The jerseys of the stage". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Archived from the original on 22 July 2017. Retrieved 4 July 2017.
  17. ^ "The history of the Tour de France – Year 1997 – The jerseys of the stage". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Archived from the original on 10 September 2017. Retrieved 4 July 2017.
  18. ^ "The history of the Tour de France – Year 1998 – The jerseys of the stage". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Archived from the original on 4 July 2017. Retrieved 4 July 2017.
  19. ^ "The history of the Tour de France – Year 2003 – The jerseys of the stage". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Archived from the original on 4 July 2017. Retrieved 4 July 2017.
  20. ^ "The history of the Tour de France – Year 2012 – The jerseys of the stage". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Archived from the original on 2 September 2016. Retrieved 4 July 2017.
  21. ^ "The history of the Tour de France – Year 2013 – The jerseys of the stage". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Archived from the original on 17 July 2017. Retrieved 4 July 2017.
  22. ^ "The history of the Tour de France – Year 2015 – The jerseys of the stage". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Archived from the original on 17 July 2017. Retrieved 4 July 2017.
  23. ^ "The history of the Tour de France – Year 2016 – The jerseys of the stage". Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Archived from the original on 10 July 2017. Retrieved 4 July 2017.

Further readingEdit

External linksEdit