1961 Tour de France

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
1961 Tour de France
Race details
Dates 25 June–16 July 1961
Stages 21 (22 including split stages)
Distance 4,397 km (2,732 mi)
Winning time 122h 01' 33" (36.033 km/h or 22.390 mph)
Winner  Jacques Anquetil (France) (France)
Second  Guido Carlesi (Italy) (Italy)
Third  Charly Gaul (Luxembourg) (Switzerland/Luxembourg)

Points  André Darrigade (France) (France)
Mountains  Imerio Massignan (Italy) (Italy)
Team France

The 1961 Tour de France was the 48th running of the Tour de France. It meandered through France from 25 June to 16 July 1961. It consisted of 21 stages, a total of 4,397 km (2,732 mi), which was ridden at an average speed of 36.033 kilometres per hour (22.390 mph).[1] Out of the 132 riders who started the tour, 72 managed to complete the tour's tough course. Throughout the 1961 Tour de France, two of the French national team's riders, André Darrigade and Jacques Anquetil held the yellow jersey for the entirety 21 stages. There was a great deal of excitement between the second and third places, concluding with Guido Carlesi stealing Charly Gaul's second place position on the last day by two seconds.

Changes from the 1960 Tour de France[edit]

For the first time in the Tour de France history, a stage finished on top of a mountain, when in stage 16, the finish was on top of the Superbagnères.[2]

The calculation for the team classification was different from previous years. Before 1961, the classification was based on time, but in 1961, it was based on points.

The Tour de France was meant for professional cyclists, but in 1961 the organisation started the Tour de l'Avenir the amateur version.[3]


Since Jacques Anquetil had won the 1957 Tour de France, he was unable to repeat it, due to illness, tiredness and struggle within the French team. For 1961, he asked the team captain Marcel Bidot to make a team that would only ride for him, and Bidot agreed. Anquetil announced before the race that he would take the yellow jersey as leader of the general classification on the first day, and wear it until the end of the race in Paris.[4] Gastone Nencini, who won the previous edition, did not enter in 1961, but Graziano Battistini, his team mate and runner-up of 1960, started the race as leader of the Italian team. If the French team would again have internal struggles, the Italian team could emerge as the winner. The Spanish team had two outsiders, José Pérez Francés and Fernando Manzaneque. The last outsider was Charly Gaul,winner of the 1958 Tour de France, who rode in the mixed Luxembourg-Swiss team. He considered his team mates so weak that he did not seek their help, and rode the race on his own.[4] Raymond Poulidor was convinced by his team manager Antonin Magne that it would be better to skip the Tour, because the national team format would undermine his commercial value.[5]

Race details[edit]

A cyclist followed by a car, watched by spectators on both sides of the road.
Jaap Kersten in Geraardsbergen

André Darrigade won the opening stage, and it became the fifth time that he won the opening stage.[2] Darrigade had been in a small group that broke away, which included Anquetil. Other competitors, such as Gaul and Battistini, already lost more than 5 minutes.[4] After that, there was a time trial, won by Jacques Anquetil. Anquetil became the leader of the race, with his team mate Joseph Groussard in second place, almost five minutes behind him.[4]

The second stage, run in bad weather, featured small roads in Northern France. Several cyclists got into problems, and seven cyclists already had to leave the race; the favourites were not harmed.[6]

In the sixth stage, German Horst Oldenburg fell down on the descent of the Col de la Schlucht, and the Dutch team captain Ab Geldermans ran into him. Geldermans was taken to the Belfort hospital by helicopter, and the Dutch team had lost its captain.[6]

Unlike previous years, the French team continued without fights, and won five of the first eight stages.[4] The ninth stage included four major climbs. On the second climb, Gaul escaped. He crashed on the descent of the third mountain, but managed to stay away and win the stage; Anquetil was not far behind and kept the lead.[4] Anquetil had a five-minutes margin on the second-placed rider, which was Manzaneque. In the eleventh stage, Graziano Battistini was hit by a car, and had to leave the race.[6] This situation had not changed when the sixteenth stage started. It was expected that Gaul, in third place more than six minutes behind, would attack, but this did not happen,[4] because Gaul had been injured in his crash in the previous stage.[6] The last chance for the opposition to win back time on Anquetil was in the seventeenth stage, but Anquetil stayed close to his direct competitors, and only allowed lower classified riders to escape. The press criticized Anquetil's tactics, saying he was riding passively.[7] In the nineteenth stage, an individual time trial, Gaul was on his way to win back a little time on Anquetil, when he crashed heavily, and could not find his pace again. Anquetil won almost three minutes on Gaul and extended his lead to more than ten minutes.[8]

In the final two stages, Anquetil did not get into problems. His main rival Gaul even lost time in the last stage, and conceded his second place to Guido Carlesi.[6]


The 1961 Tour de France started on 25 June in Rouen, and had one restday, in Montpellier.[9]

Stage results[10][11]
Stage Date Route Terrain Length Winner
1a 25 June Rouen – Versailles Plain stage 136.5 km (84.8 mi)  André Darrigade (FRA)
1b Versailles – Versailles Individual time trial 28.5 km (17.7 mi)  Jacques Anquetil (FRA)
2 26 June PontoiseRoubaix Plain stage 230.5 km (143.2 mi)  André Darrigade (FRA)
3 27 June Roubaix – Charleroi Plain stage 197.5 km (122.7 mi)  Emile Daems (BEL)
4 28 June Charleroi – Metz Plain stage 237.5 km (147.6 mi)  Anatole Novak (FRA)
5 29 June Metz – Strasbourg Stage with mountain(s) 221 km (137 mi)  Louis Bergaud (FRA)
6 30 June Strasbourg – Belfort Stage with mountain(s) 180.5 km (112.2 mi)  Jozef Planckaert (BEL)
7 1 July Belfort – Chalon sur Saône Plain stage 214.5 km (133.3 mi)  Jean Stablinski (FRA)
8 2 July Chalon sur Saône – St Etienne Stage with mountain(s) 240.5 km (149.4 mi)  Jean Forestier (FRA)
9 3 July St Etienne – Grenoble Stage with mountain(s) 230 km (140 mi)  Charly Gaul (LUX)
10 4 July Grenoble – Turin Stage with mountain(s) 250.5 km (155.7 mi)  Guy Ignolin (FRA)
11 5 July Turin – Juan les Pins Stage with mountain(s) 225 km (140 mi)  Guido Carlesi (ITA)
12 6 July Juan les Pins – Aix en Provence Stage with mountain(s) 199.0 km (123.7 mi)  Michel Van Aerde (BEL)
13 7 July Aix en Provence – Montpellier Plain stage 177.5 km (110.3 mi)  André Darrigade (FRA)
14 9 July Montpellier – Perpignan Plain stage 174 km (108 mi)  Eddy Pauwels (BEL)
15 10 July Perpignan – Toulouse Plain stage 206 km (128 mi)  Guido Carlesi (ITA)
16 11 July Toulouse – Luchon/Superbagnères Stage with mountain(s) 208 km (129 mi)  Imerio Massignan (ITA)
17 12 July Luchon – Pau Stage with mountain(s) 197 km (122 mi)  Eddy Pauwels (BEL)
18 13 July Pau – Bordeaux Plain stage 207 km (129 mi)  Martin Van Geneugden (BEL)
19 14 July BergeracPérigueux Individual time trial 74.5 km (46.3 mi)  Jacques Anquetil (FRA)
20 15 July Périgueux – Tours Plain stage 309.5 km (192.3 mi)  André Darrigade (FRA)
21 16 July Tours – Paris Plain stage 252.5 km (156.9 mi)  Robert Cazala (FRA)

Classification leadership[edit]

Stage General classification
Points classification
Mountains classification Team classification
1a  André Darrigade (FRA)  André Darrigade (FRA) no award  France
1b  Jacques Anquetil (FRA)  Jacques Anquetil (FRA)
2  André Darrigade (FRA)
5  Louis Bergaud (FRA)
6  Eddy Pauwels (BEL)
9  Charly Gaul (LUX)
10  Imerio Massignan (ITA)
19  Jean Gainche (FRA)
20  André Darrigade (FRA)
Final  Jacques Anquetil (FRA)  André Darrigade (FRA)  Imerio Massignan (ITA)  France


There were several classifications in the 1961 Tour de France, two of them awarding jerseys to their leaders. 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.[12]

Additionally, there was a points classification. In the points classification, 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.[12]

There was also a mountains classification. The organisation had categorized 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-categorized climbs. The cyclist with the most points lead the classification, but was not identified with a jersey.[12]

For the team classification, the times of the best three cyclists per team on each stage were added; the team with the lowest time on a stage won the team prize for that stage. The overall team classification was calculated by counting the number of team prizes.

General classification[edit]

Final general classification (1–10)[8]
Rank Name Team Time
1  Jacques Anquetil (FRA) France 122h 01' 33"
2  Guido Carlesi (ITA) Italy +12' 14"
3  Charly Gaul (LUX) Switzerland-Luxembourg +12' 16"
4  Imerio Massignan (ITA) Italy +15' 59"
5  Hans Junkermann (FRG) West-Germany +16' 09"
6  Fernando Manzaneque (ESP) Spain +16' 27"
7  José Pérez Francés (ESP) Spain +20' 41"
8  Jean Dotto (FRA) Centre-Midi +21' 44"
9  Eddy Pauwels (BEL) Belgium +26' 57"
10  Jan Adriaensens (BEL) Belgium +28' 05"

Points classification[edit]

The points classification was won by André Darrigade.

Final points classification (1–10)[13][14]
Rank Rider Team Points
1  André Darrigade (FRA) France 174
2  Jean Gainche (FRA) West/South West 169
3  Guido Carlesi (ITA) Italy 148
4  Jacques Anquetil (FRA) France 146
5  Frans Aerenhouts (BEL) Belgium 120
6  Michel Van Aerde (BEL) Belgium 97
7  Eddy Pauwels (BEL) Belgium 95
8  Imerio Massignan (ITA) Italy 92
9  Hans Junkermann (FRG) West-Germany 82
10  Jozef Planckaert (BEL) Belgium 74

Mountains classification[edit]

Final mountains classification (1–11)[13]
Rank Rider Team Points
1  Imerio Massignan (ITA) Italy 95
2  Charly Gaul (LUX) Switzerland/Luxembourg 61
3  Hennes Junkermann (FRG) West-Germany 48
4  Marcel Queheille (FRA) West/South West 46
5  Eddy Pauwels (BEL) Belgium 29
6  Manuel Busto (FRA) Centre-Midi 28
7  Guy Ignolin (FRA) West/South West 26
7  Jacques Anquetil (FRA) France 26
9  Jef Planckaert (BEL) Belgium 19
10  Jean Dotto (FRA) Centre-Midi 17
10  André Foucher (FRA) West/South West 17

Team classification[edit]

The team classification was won by the French national team.

Final team classification[15]
Rank Team Points
1 France 10
2 Belgium 5
3 Italy 3
3 West-South West 3
5 Centre-Midi 1

The other teams received no points.

Other classifications[edit]

The combativity award was given to the entire regional West-South West team.[1]


As Anquetil had led the race after every stage, there was not much competitiveness, which organiser Jacques Goddet termed a "fiasco".[5] After the race, the system with national teams was abandoned, and it was announced that the 1962 Tour de France would be run with sponsored teams.[5]


  1. ^ a b Augendre, Jacques (2009). "Guide Historique, part 6" (PDF) (in French). Amaury Sport Organisation. Archived from the original on 2009-10-03. Retrieved 3 March 2010. 
  2. ^ a b Amaury Sport Organisation. "The Tour - Year 1961". letour.fr. Retrieved 10 May 2010. 
  3. ^ Dauncey, p. 115
  4. ^ a b c d e f g McGann, Bill; McGann, Carol (2006). The Story of the Tour De France. Dog ear publishing. pp. 249–253. ISBN 978-1-59858-180-5. Retrieved 31 August 2010. 
  5. ^ a b c Dauncey, p. 112
  6. ^ a b c d e Amels, Wim (1984). De geschiedenis van de Tour de France 1903–1984 (in Dutch). Sport-Express. pp. 88–89. 
  7. ^ Boyce, Barry (2004). "Anquetil Blossoms". Cyclingrevealed. Retrieved 31 August 2010. 
  8. ^ a b "48ème Tour de France 1961 - 19ème étape" (in French). Memoire du cyclisme. Retrieved 31 August 2010. 
  9. ^ Augendre, Jacques (2009). "Guide Historique, part 4" (PDF) (in French). Amaury Sport Organisation. Retrieved 3 March 2010. 
  10. ^ "48ème Tour de France 1961" (in French). Memoire du cyclisme. Retrieved 5 March 2010. 
  11. ^ Zwegers, Arian. "Tour de France GC Top Ten". CVCC. Archived from the original on 2009-06-10. Retrieved 5 March 2010. 
  12. ^ a b c Christian, Sarah (2 July 2009). "Tour de France demystified - Evaluating success". RoadCycling.co.nz Ltd. Retrieved 28 April 2012. 
  13. ^ a b "1961: 48e editie". Tourdefrance.nl. 30 December 2003. Retrieved 24 March 2010. 
  14. ^ "Puntenklassement". Leidsche Courant (in Dutch) (Regionaal Archief Leiden). 17 July 1961. p. 8. Retrieved 18 July 2013. 
  15. ^ "Clasificaciones" (in Spanish). El Mundo Deportivo. 17 July 1961. Retrieved 18 May 2010.