Sometimes messages and pictures end up in your inbox that you save after reading because they are interesting and so that you can work with them later. A member of our tour club is an international truck driver. On Sunday mornings during our weekly ride, I invariably ask him where he has been the past week. The answer is often, "A trip to the south of France and unloading there, then to Italy to load and then back to Holland." It's just like riding a bicycle: kilometers!

After this general information, the details follow later and he often shows beautiful pictures. He is someone who enjoys his work and has an eye for everything around him from the high cabin. He knows that I am interested in everything to do with cycling and comes across quite a few things!

How about this photo of an old Peugeot 404 that he took from his cab while driving near Mont Blanc? Such a photo should be analyzed at leisure and further searched for connections. First the car. Everything looks like it is an old squad car. No fewer than 2,885,374 of these Peugeots were produced between 1960-1975. Now it has an English license plate. It must be a car of a true cycling enthusiast. Just look at the retro bikes with the foot straps and handlebar cables on the roof rack! What cycling enthusiast wouldn’t want such an authentic car? Characteristic are the black blocks that “adorn” the car. From 1963, the blocks have been the hallmark of the Peugeot cycling team. It has been said that the white jersey with the black blocks is the most beautiful ever.Would director-sportif Gaston Plaud have ever been behind the wheel of this car?

The Tour de France 1967 sign on the rear bumper automatically brings us to that year’s Tour. This 54th edition featured country teams with thirteen teams of ten riders each. Overall winner is Peugeot rider Roger Pingeon (1940-2017), who then rides for the French A team. But if we think through, something is wrong. The 1967 Tour de France sign cannot be the right one. From all the photos on the Internet, it appears that in this Tour edition with country teams, the cars of the branded teams are not driven, but neutral cars without advertising. The year sign does not match the car or vice versa! Who will notice that more than half a century later, the owner must have thought.

The year 1967 is a special year in Tour history. It is the year Tom Simpson will die on the Mont-Ventoux. Jan Janssen wins the stage in Carpentras that day. In this Tour there are Belgian stage wins for Walter Godefroot, Willy Van Neste and Herman Van Springel. Guido Reybrouck becomes winner of two stages.



Text: Teus Korporaal
Foto: © Milko van de Waarsenburg

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