La Sportive

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La Sportive
Team information
Registered France
Founded 1918 (1918)
Disbanded 1921
Discipline Road
Team name history
1919–1921 La Sportive

La Sportive is a the name under which French cyclists rode in the first years after the First World War, when there was not enough money for conventional cycling teams.

History[edit]

Many bicycle factories that sponsored cycling teams in the early 20th century suffered and some were destroyed during World War I. There was little money to sponsor a team so several businesses ran a joint team called La Sportive.[1] to keep the sport alive. Alcyon, Armor, Automoto, Clément, La Française, Gladiator, Griffon, Hurtu, Labor, Liberator, Peugeot and Thomann are said to have equipped half the peloton and to have controlled the riders' salaries.[2]

In the Tours de France of 1919, 1920 and 1921, all professional cyclists were sponsored by La Sportive, and because amateur cyclists had little chance to win, the winner of the Tour was also sponsored by La Sportive.[3] Eugène Christophe was in a grey La Sportive jersey when, leading the 1919 Tour de France, Henri Desgrange gave him the Tour's first yellow jersey.[4]

The consortium disappeared in 1922 when the companies restarted their own teams. They included Peugeot, the Automoto and the Alycon. During the three years of the La Sportive consortium, the member companies were rebuilding their teams and it is possible these riders rode for these teams as well as La Sportive. In 1925, the old situation of cyclists riding in sponsored teams returned to the Tour de France.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ McGann, Bill; McGann, Carol (2006). The Story of the Tour de France. Dog Ear Publishing. pp. 51–56. ISBN 1-59858-180-5. Retrieved 8 June 2009. 
  2. ^ "Cycles Automoto: Setting the Standard". EBykr. Retrieved 2007-11-04. 
  3. ^ "Norbert Peugeot: The inventor of the training camp". Cyclingnews.com. Retrieved 2007-11-04. 
  4. ^ "Firmin Lambot (Belgique)". Memoire du cyclisme.net. Retrieved 2007-11-12. 
  5. ^ Tom James (15 August 2003). "1925: Once again Bottecchia". Retrieved 10 June 2009.