1936 Vuelta - Gustaaf Deloor

by Matthias Van Milders on 18 June 2021
A Frenchman won the first Tour de France and an Italian won the first Giro d'Italia but, in 1935, the first Vuelta winner was a Belgian: Gustaaf Deloor. The following year, he finished the Vuelta again wearing the light orange leader's jersey still in use at the time. On the second day, he scored the first of three stage victories. The roads between Salamanca and Cáceres were in such poor condition that several riders ended up running out of spare tyres. The organisers were forced to buy new tubes along the route. Gustaaf Deloor took this in his stride. He too rode with a puncture, but he soloed away to arrive well ahead of his brother Alfons. He won the chasing group sprint ahead of the Italian Antonio Bertola. That top three was a mirror image of the podium at the end of the Vuelta. Deloor returned home with this dazzling trophy under his arm. The Spanish civil war erupted just over two months later, so the Vuelta disappeared from the cycling calendar until 1940.


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