Ventoux Cycling History

Tom Simpson

tomSimpsonBritain’s Tom Simpson died on Mont Ventoux on 13th July 1967 during the Tour de France as a result of exhaustion and dehydration. Simpson, healing who was 29, was the first British rider to have a genuine chance of winning the Tour. He had worn the yellow jersey for a day in 1962, when he finished sixth overall. The French press and public loved him, nicknaming him Mr Tom. But Simpson was also known to push himself to the limits. That day on Mont Ventoux, he pushed himself too far. It was a hot day and by the time Simpson got to Ventoux he was in trouble. On the climb he started to weave across the road before collapsing. Alcohol and amphetamines were found in his bloodstream. The readers of Cycling, as Cycling Weekly was called then, donated to a fund started by editor Alan Gayfer. Officials in Bedoin were approached for permission to put up a granite memorial, which features a silhouette of Simpson. Thousands of cyclists visit the memorial each year.
The Ultra6 Team are aware we will be on the mountain on the 48th anniversary of Tom Simpson’s death, and we will be paying tribute to an amazing cycling talent who truly competed at the highest level. He was one of only a few British cyclists to achieve greatness.

 


 

Chris Froome, King of the Mountains
2013 Tour de France: stage 15 winner

froomeThe day when Chris Froome shelled everyone on Mont Ventoux to take his second mountain-top win of the race.

For all the talk of Froome looking vulnerable and under-supported due to injuries and withdrawals in his team, the Kenyan-born Brit showed that he was the strongest climber in the race and, realistically, an unbackable favourite from this point on.

Nairo Quintana came closest to spoiling Froome’s day, having attacked with roughly 13km to go, reeling in a number of riders up the road. And when Froome attacked from a select group of riders with 7km to go and caught up to Quintana, the diminutive Colombian was able to stay with Froome, seeing off a flurry of attacks.

But with the two riders on the Mont Ventoux moonscape and with just over a kilometre to the summit, Froome attacked Quintana once more and that was that. The Colombian drifted backwards and the Brit stomped his way to victory in that awkward but so-damned-effective style of his.