___Race Snippets

 

11th Tour de France 1913

 
   
 

By Barry Boyce, CyclingRevealed Historian

 

 

xx Petit-Briton's crash

 

xxxxx xx xxxxxPhilippe Thys

 

 

Accidents Play a Critical Role in the Race

Crashes, mishaps, and mechanical problems have always been part of the Tour de France, but in 1913 these dubious affairs would play a large role in determining the overall winner of this Tour.

Concern over the growing “political determination” of stage winners, race director Henri Desgranges returned the TdF to an overall classification based on time. Stage six featured an epic trip into the Circle of Death (where Tour hopes die). The always-aggressive Eugene Christophe attacked early and dropped race leader Odiel Defraye. Defraye, nursing an injured thigh muscle, was the first to succumb to the pain and abandoned on the brutal climb of the Col du Tourmalet.

The next accident hit Christophe while descent of the Tourmalet. While well ahead of the peloton he broke the front fork of his bike and crashed heavily. Despite his injuries, he quickly gathered the pieces and began to run down the mountain. Fourteen kilometers late he reached the village of Ste. Marie de Campan. After finding a forge he frantically worked the bellows, under the watchful eye of race officials. When he reached a point in the repairs where a third hand was necessary he had to ask a village youngster to pump the forge. After completing the repairs, he finished the stage a distant 3 hours and 50 minute behind the new race leader Philippe Thys. Despite having lost nearly four hours, race director Desgranges fined Christophe another 10 minutes for illegal help at the forge.

New race leader Philippe Thys struggled on stage seven and lost the overall lead to Marcel Buysse (Bel). Riding aggressively into stage nine, Buysse snapped his handlebars and was forced to walk to the Town of Esterel for repairs. He lost 3 hours and 27 minutes on the stage and his shot at the overall victory. Thys regained the race lead but the race for the overall was not done.

Lucien Petit-Breton and Gustave Garrigou were closely challenging him. On the stage from Longwy to Dunkerque, leader Thys and second place Petit-Breton played out a final uncertain affair. Aggressively trying to make up his time deficit, Petit-Breton crashed on a narrow turn leading to Dunkerque. Badly injured and unable to continue, he was forced to abandon the race. Shortly after Petit-Breton's misfortune race leader Thys also crashed, temporarily losing consciousness. A semi-conscious Thys remounted his bike and completed the stage. He lost 54 minutes to his next challenger Gustave Garrigou, who elevated himself to second place overall, only 8 minutes and 37 seconds behind.

The last stage into Paris was aggressively contested Garrigou but Philippe Thys marked his every move. Thys finished in the same time Garrigou and earned a hard fought, crash filled victory.

SPECIAL NOTE: The forge at Ste. Marie de Campan still exists today. This incident was so famous in 1913; it inspired the French state government in 1951 to declare the forge an official monument. It became a symbol of French will, courage, and determination, all of which this great French hero displayed in 1913.

Stage and Distance

Stage Winner

Race Leader

Stage 1 Paris-Le Havre, 388 km

Giovanni Michelotto (Ita)

Giovanni Michelotto (Ita)

Stage 2 Le Havre-Cherbourg, 364 km

Jules Masselis (Bel)

Jules Masselis (Bel)

Stage 3 Cherbourg-Brest, 405 km

Henri Pelissier (Fra)

Odiel Defraye (Bel)

Stage 4 Brest-La Rochelle, 470 km

Marcel Buysse (Bel)

Odiel Defraye (Bel)

Stage 5 La Rochelle-Bayonne, 379 km

Henri Vanlerberghe (Bel)

Odiel Defraye (Bel)

Stage 6 Bayonne-Luchon, 326 km

Philippe Thys (Bel)

PhilippeThys (Bel)

Stage 7 Luchon-Perpignan, 323 km

Marcel Buysse (Bel)

Marcel Buysse (Bel)

Stage 8 Perpignan-Aix en Provence , 325 km

Gustave Garrigou (Fra)

Marcel Buysse (Bel)

Stage 9 Aix en Provence -Nice, 356 km

Firmin Lambot (Bel)

PhilippeThys (Bel)

Stage 10 Nice-Grenoble, 333 km

Francois Faber (Lux)

PhilippeThys (Bel)

Stage 11 Grenoble-Geneva (Sui), 325 km

Marcel Buysse (Bel)

PhilippeThys (Bel)

Stage 12 Geneva (Sui)- Belfort , 335 km

Marcel Buysse (Bel)

PhilippeThys (Bel)

Stage 13 Belfort-Longwy, 325 km

Francois Faber (Lux)

PhilippeThys (Bel)

Stage 14 Longwy-Dunkerque, 393 km

Marcel Buysse (Bel)

PhilippeThys (Bel)

Stage 15 Dunkerque-Paris/Parc de Princes, 340 km

Marcel Buysse (Bel)

PhilippeThys (Bel)

 

TdF June 29-July 27, 1913
5,387 Km

1. Philippe THYS (Bel) 197h54'00"

2. Gustave Garrigou (Fra) +8'37"

3. Marcel Buysse (Bel) +3h30'55"

Starters: 141
Finishers: 25
Average Speed: 27.625 km/h

 

 

Return to the Timeline ToC

Return to the Race Snippets ToC

 
       
         
         
   


All materials are property of CyclingRevealed and Copyright © 2010
unless otherwise noted

Advertising Information | Contact Us
-