“To prepare for a race there is nothing better than a good pheasant, some champagne and a woman.”

 

Jacques copy

So said Jacques Anquetil… and he should know – he managed to win the Tour de France no less than 5 times in the 1950’s and 60’s (when the average tour length was about 1,000 miles longer than it is today).

After seeing the picture of him above, I have adopted a new sporting hero although his private life was off the scale. I don’t think you could even excuse it as simply being ‘French’. The book “Sex, Lies and Handlebar Tape” reveals that this was a man who 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. Strangely enough, the women in his life all remember him rather fondly! You couldn’t make this stuff up.

 

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