Raymond Poulidor Photo Gallery
Raymond Poulidor (born April 15, 1936) was a rider of fabulous physical gifts with wins in such prestigious races as Milan-San Remo, Flèche Wallonne, Grand Prix des Nations, Vuelta a España and Paris-Nice. He started the Tour de France 14 times and finished 12 times. Despite his three second places and five thirds, he never spent a single day in Yellow. Not one. His career is littered with many tactical failures.
He had the misfortune to have his career intersect two of the postwar era's finest riders, Jacques Anquetil and Eddy Merckx. Anquetil, wanting to be France's premier rider so that he could command high appearance fees, was obsessed with beating Poulidor. Yet, Poulidor, "the Eternal Second", probably made more money than Anquetil. The seemingly ambitionless Poulidor was was much more loved by the French racing fans.
Even towards the end of his career, he was still a formidable rider. When Eddy Merckx attacked descending Mount Royal near the end of the 1974 Montreal World Road Championships, only Poulidor could escape with the Belgian. Poulidor held on and finished two seconds behind Merckx for second place. In 1976, 40 years old, he was third in the Tour de France.
He had a long professional career (1960 - 1977), always riding for bike maker Mercier.
1961: Milano-San Remo, French Championships
1963: Flèche Wallonne, Grand Prix de Nations
1964: Vuelta a España, Critérium National
1966: Critérium National, Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré
1968: Critérium National
1969: Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré
1971: Catalonian Week, Critérium National
1972: Paris-Nice, Critérium National, Critérium des As
1973: Paris-Nice, G.P du Midi Libre
1960 - 1969: Mercier-BP-Hutchinson
1970 - 1971: Fagor-Mercier
1972 - 1976: Gan-Mercier
Nicknames: Pouli, The Eternal Second, Poupou
Raymond Poulidor on the Portet d'Aspet in stage 14 of the 1962 Tour de France
1963 Tour de France, stage 10. Poulidor leads the break followed by Federico Bahamontes and possibly José Pérez-Francés. Jacques Anquetil is on his left.
1964 Tour de France, stage 20: Jacques Anquetil (left) and Raymond Poulidor race up Puy de Dôme
Poulidor and Julio Jiménez successfully broke away in stage 14 of the 1965 Tour de France.
1966 Tour de France, stage 11: Poulidor leads Jacques Anquetil up the Portillon
1966 Tour de France, probably stage 17: Jacques Anquetil on the left and Raymond Poulidor on the right.
Raymond Poulidor riding the final stage of the 1966 Tour de France, a 51.3 km time trial to Paris.
1967 Tour de France, stage 10: Raymond Poulidor guides Roger Pingeon up the Galibier
1976 Tour de France, stage 9: Bernard Thévenet has Poulidor (Gan-Mercier jersey) just on his left.
Raymond Delisle (yellow jersey) and Raymond Poulidor in stage 13 of the 1976 Tour de France.
Raymond Poulidor (in yellow, at last) with 1959 Tour de France winner Federico Bahamontes at stage 9 of the 2013 Tour de France