For the first time since his death in 1987, this astounding biography reveals the extraordinary truth behind the legend, the man, and the cyclist. His list of "firsts" alone makes him worthy of a place in the cycling pantheon: the first man to win the Tour de France five times; the first man to win all three grand tours—the Tour de France, Giro d'Italia, and Vuelta a España; and the first man to win both the Tour and Vuelta in the same year. However, the extraordinary life of Anquetil does not stop at his achievements on a bike. He candidly admitted to using drugs, offended legions of fans by confessing that his only motivation for riding was financial, and infamously indulged his enthusiasm for the high life. He also seduced and married his doctor's wife, had a child with her daughter, and then sustained a ménage à trois with both wife and stepdaughter under the same roof for 12 years. When this "family" eventually imploded, he attempted to inspire jealousy in his former lovers by having a child with his stepson's ex-wife. Containing exclusive contributions from Anquetil's family, friends, teammates, and rivals, Sex, Lies and Handlebar Tape untangles myth from reality and confirms that fact is definitely stranger than fiction.
1 x 8pp b/w
1 x 8pp b/w
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Many cycling books are poorly written and you want to put them down after five pages. This book is not - it is entertaining and well-crafted and reveals the story behind one of the greatest cycling legends. Always in control on the bike, Anquetil crashed through the boundaries of everyday life while always selfishly choosing his own desires.
Before reading this book, I had little knowledge of Jacques Anquetil. I knew he was one of the greats of cycling, and I thought of him as a special hero within French cycling.
Setting aside his personal life for the moment, let’s not forget how great a cyclist Anquetil really was. He was the first of the five time Tour de France winners, and he could arguably have won more. He won the Giro d’Italia twice and the Vuelta a Espana once. He once owned the hour record, won one of the classic “Monuments” races, and on and on.
I hadn’t known about his unorthodox attitudes toward training. He trained intensively for only short periods of time. He seemed inattentive to needs for rest or a healthy diet, maybe even flaunting disdain for such things. He seemed actually to thrive on doing all the wrong things to his body — drinking, eating rich foods, cutting his sleep short even in preparation for and during stage races. That he...
This is a very informative book about a cycling great who is less appreciated in the US than he should be. The book title and trimmings indicate that it focusses on the salacious details of his personal life, but while these are covered the book is really more of a complete biography with lots of material from his racing career, memories of his teammates and opponents, and so on. Very good read.
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