1903 Tour de France

The Tour de France in 1903 was the first edition of the French - stages bicycle race Tour de France. It included six stages between 1 and July 19, 1903 with a total length of 2428 kilometers. The winner was Maurice Garin.

Race course

The hour record holder Henri Desgrange wanted to achieve increased circulation of his newspaper L'Auto (now L' Équipe ). An editor of the newspaper, Géo Lefèvre, made with intervening rest days on 20 November 1902 a proposal for a bicycle tour of France in several stages. On January 19, 1903 L'Auto announced the staging of a Tour de France: "The biggest cycling test in the world, a month-long race."

There were delays. The prize money has been increased to a total of 20,000 francs to make the Tour de France more attractive. Moreover, the planned start was not approved in Paris, so that he had to be moved to a suburb. Finally, the first Tour de France started on July 1, 1903 15:16 clock at the Café Le Reveil Matin in Montgeron and lasted until July 19, 1903.

The tour was also the first real stage race in the history of cycling. Enormous distances were covered previously in long-distance journeys such as Bordeaux - Paris ( 577 km for the first time in 1891 ). The programmatic name of Tour de France operated while well aware of the patriotic mood of the time.

81 drivers had registered, including 71 French, three Belgians, four Swiss, two German and one Italian. At the start there were a 60 racers. Within 18 days, they should pass through the whole of France, divided into six stages with an average length of about 400 kilometers. The route led from Montgeron on the stage cities of Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux and Nantes to Paris. A total of 2428 km had to be driven. Between the stages they put each one several days of rest. The stages were usually started in the first dawn and lasted on average for even the best drivers around 16 hours.

Winner of the first Tour of the story were the favored Frenchman Maurice Garin with an average speed of 25.679 km / h Garin, who had previously decided in the years long distance trips like Paris -Brest-Paris or Bordeaux - Paris by itself, received the number 1 and was able to justify his favorites from the start position. He won the first stage and two more, and sat down in the standings finally with the biggest lead of the story of second-placed Lucien Pothier by. Of the 60 riders started only reached the goal of 21 in Paris, the last placed Arsène Millocheau had a backlog of almost 65 hours.

The chief editor of L'Auto, Henri Desgrange, remained until his death in 1940 director of the tour.


For each driver, there was a daily allowance of five francs, while he was in the race.

The stages


Stage 1

Stage 2

The driver of the first at this stage average speed was 25.826 km / h The mountain Col de la République is frequented.

Stage 3

The driver of the first at this stage average speed was 23.607 km / h

Stage 4

The driver of the first at this stage average speed was 30.570 km / h

Stage 5

The driver of the first at this stage average speed was 25.848 km / h

Stage 6

Overall classification