It’s Richard’s turn, in episode two of My First Tour de France, to tell us about his, in the company of Lionel and Daniel and with contributions from the winner of the Tour in question, Greg LeMond, and the man who won the race-defining first road stage, Frans Maassen.
It was 1990 and Richard’s first time seeing the Tour with his own eyes, on stage 10 in the Alps.
It was also LeMond’s third win and the one he is asked about the least. After his battles with Bernard Hinault in 1986 and Laurent Fignon in 1989, he came up against an unexpected opponent: the little known Claudio Chiappucci.
Chiappucci slipped into the four-man break on stage one that gained ten minutes, in part because there was a team time trial in the afternoon. For the next three weeks we watched a long distance pursuit match: LeMond against each member of the break, with Chiappucci the last man standing. The intrigue and drama was in not knowing when – or if – Chiappucci would crack.
In this episode we hear from LeMond about riding for the first time with a strong team behind him, about the pressure of being the world’s best paid rider, and why calling Chiappucci “Cappuccino” was an innocent mistake rather than an attempt to mock the Italian.