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Franco Bitossi Photo Gallery

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Franco Bitossi (Born September 1, 1940, professional rider 1961 - 1978) was one of cycling's most capable and versatile riders. Among his 147 professional race wins were the 1968 Tour de France and 1969 & 1970 Giro d'Italia points jerseys as well as the Giro d'Italia 1964, 1965 1966 KOM classifications.

He could sprint like a demon and climb like an angel. Because he suffered from a chronic cardiac arrhythmia (his nickname was cuore matto, or "Crazy Heart), he would have to stop occasionally in the middle of a race until his heartbeat became normal.

BikeRaceInfo interviews Franco Bitossi

Major wins:
1964: Giro d'Italia KOM
1965: Tour of Switzerland GC, Championship of Zurich, Giro d'Italia KOM
1966: Giro d'Italia KOM, 2 Tour de France stage wins
1967: Tirreno-Adriatico, Giro di Lombardia, Coppa Agostoni
1968: Championship of Zurich, Tour de France Points with 2 stage wins
1969: Giro d'Italia points, Coppa Agostini
1970: Italian Road Champion, Giro dItalia points, Giro di Lombardia, Volta a Catalunya
1971: Coppa Agostini
1976: Italian Road Champion

Franco Bitossi's teams:
1961, 1962: Philco
1963, 1964: Springoil-Fuchs
1965 - 1972: Filotex
1973: Sammontana
1974, 1975: SCIC
1976: Zonca-Santini
1977: Vibor
1978: Gis Gelati

Photos: From Signor Bitossi's private collection.

20-year-old Franco Bitossi

20-year old Franco Bitossi has just won an amateur race

1963 Giro del Trentino: Bitossi stops to let his heart rate go back to normal

1963 Giro del Trentino: the only known photo of Bitossi suffering a cardiac arrhythmia. He is stopped, waiting for his heart rate to get back to normal.

Birossi wins in San Pellegrino in the 1964 Giro

1964 Giro d'Italia: Bitossi wins in San Pellegrino.

Anquetil and Bitossi in the 1966 Giro d'italia

Jacques Anquetil leads Franco Bitossi in the 1966 Giro d'Italia

Frnaco Bitossi and Vittorio Adorni on the Stelvio

I think this is the 1967 Giro d'Italia. Bitossi leads Vittorio Adorni up the Passo dello Stelvio.

1967 Giro d'Italia: Bitossi leads up Mt Etna in stage 7

1967 Giro d'Italia: Bitossi leads up Mt. Etna in stage 7. Felice Gimondi is third.

Bitossi wins stage 7 of the 1967 Giro d'Italia

Bitossi wins stage 7 (Mt Etna) of the 67 Giro. That's Aurelio Gonzalez-Puente 3 seconds back.

Franco Bitossi in 1967 Giro d'Italia

1967 Giro d'Italia: Franco Bitossi with Eddy Merckx on his wheel. Franco Balmamion is to his left in the Molteni jersey and Francisco Gabica is rising out of the saddle behind and to Merckx's right.

Gimondi and Bitossi

Felice Gimondi and Bitossi finish a stage in the 1967 Giro d'Italia

Franco Birotti and Felice Gimndi in stage 14 of the 1967 Giro d'Italia

Bitossi and Felice Gimondi at stage 14 of the 1967 Giro d'Italia

Franco Bitossi in the 1967 Giro di Lombardia

He's gone! Franco Bitossi on his way to winning the 1967 Giro di Lombardia

Franco Bitossi

Bitossi climbs in an undated photo.

Bistossi leads van Springel in the 1968 Tour de France

1968 Tour de France: Bitossi gaps Herman van Springel on the Cote de Cordon

Franco Bitossi in the 1968 Tour de France red points jersey

Bitossi in the 1968 Tour de France wearing the points jersey. It was red that year.

Franco Bitossi ins tage 15 of the 1969 Giro

Bitossi in the points leader's cyclamen jersey in stage 15 of the 1969 Giro

1970 Giro: Bitossi wins stage 1

1970 Giro d'Italia: Bitossi wins stage 1 at Biandronno

Merckx and Bitossi after sage 2 of the 1970 Giro

Bitossi in pink with Eddy Merckx after stage 2 of the 1970 Giro.

Franco Bitossi and Aldo Moser

1970: Italian road champion Bitossi with Aldo Moser

Dancelli, Bitossi and Bartali

An undated photo, Michele Dancelli (left), Bitossi and Gino Bartali

1970: Gianni motta and Franco Bitossi

1970: Gianni Motta and Franco Bitossi

Bitossi, Gimondi and Zilioli

Undated photo, from left: Franco Bitossi, Felice Gimondi and Italo Zilioli

1070 Giro d'Italia: Franco Bitossi in pink with Eddy Merckx

1970 Giro d'Italia: Franco Bitossi took the Pink Jersey on the first stage and held it until Eddy Merckx took it in the 7th stage. Here they are, probably after the first stage.

1970 giro d'Italia: Bitossi in pink after riding dirt roads

1970 Giro d'Italia: Bitossi is in the pink jersey and has just finished stage over dirt roads (strade bianche or white roads)

Bitossi wins the italian orad championship

Bitossi has just won the 1970 Italian road championship and puts on the tricolor champion's jersey.

Franco Bitossi in the 1971 Giro d'Italia

From the 1971 Giro d'Italia. It's not all racing.

Bitossi wins the 1971 Coppa Agostoni

Bitossi wins the 1971 Coppa Agostoni

Franco Bitossi in the 1971 Coppa Placci

Bitossi races the 1971 Coppa Placci

1971 Giro di Lombardia start: bitossi and Polidori

At the start of the 1971 Giro di Lombardia in Milan: As the 1970 winner, Bitossi gets the No. 1 backnumber. He's with Giancarlo Polidori.

1971 Milano 6-Day, Franco Bitossi and Eddy Merckx

At the Milano 1971 6-Day, Franco Bitossi and Eddy Merckx

Bitossi in 1973

Franco Bitossi in belgium

Franco Bitossi in Belgium

SCIC in 1974

Bitossi's 1974 SCIC squad. in the front row, from the left: Giambattista Baronchelli, Enrico Paolini and Franco Bitossi. In the back row, on the left is Celestino Vercelli, founder of Vittoria Shoes.

Bitossi with Enrico Paolini and Giambattista Baronchelli

1974 or 75: From left, Enrico Paolini, Franco Bitossi, Giambattista Baronchelli

1974 or 54, Bitossi attacks

1974 or 75, Bitossi attacks.

Bitossi wins 1974 giro di Romagna

Bitossi wins the 1974 Giro di Romagna

Bisotti in cyclocross race

Displaying a bit of versitility, Bitossi in a cyclocross race in 1974 or 75.

Franco Bitossi speaks

Franco Bitossi speaks in 1975. On his left in the same row is Celestino Vercelli, founder of Vittoria shoes.

1976 Trofeo Laigueglia finish

1976 Trofeo Laigueglia. Roger de Vlaeminck (left front in Brooklyn kit) was disqualified for irregular sprinting (see crash in background) and Bitossi was made the winner.

Franco Bitossi in the Italian orad championships

Bitossi in the 1976 Italian road championships

Bistossi wins 1976 Italian road championshp

Hours later Bitossi wins the 1976 Italian road championship

Franco Bitossi in 2003

Franco Bitossi in 2003 with one of his old racing bikes.

Valeria Paoletti and Franco Bitossi

Valeria Paoletti and Franco Bitoss after their interview in 2003

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