First Spanish cyclist to wear yellow jersey dies at 85

Catalan racer Miguel Poblet also won stages in all three Grand Tours in the same season

El País Agencies
Madrid -
Miguel Poblet in 1960.
Miguel Poblet in 1960.CARLOS PÉREZ DE ROZAS (EFE)

Miguel Poblet, the first Spanish cyclist to wear the yellow jersey in the Tour de France, died on Friday in Barcelona. He was 85.

In a career that lasted from 1944 to 1962, Poblet was also the first Spaniard to win the Milan–San Remo race, which he conquered twice, in 1957 and 1959, and in 1956 became the first cyclist to win stages of each of the three Grand Tours — the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España — in the same year.

The Catalan sprinter received the yellow jersey after winning the first stage of his debut Tour in 1955. He also triumphed in the final stage of that year’s race in Paris.

But it was in Italy where he shone the most, riding to a total of 20 stage wins over the years in the Giro.

“The Yellow Arrow”

Born in Montcada i Reixac in Barcelona province in 1928, “The Yellow Arrow,” as he was nicknamed on account of the yellow outfit worn by his Ignis team, was also a two-time winner of the Volta a Catalunya, in 1952 and 1960.

Poblet died of kidney failure having been taken to hospital in Barcelona several days ago suffering from an infection.

In a telegram sent to the president of the Spanish cycling federation, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, who is a big fan of the sport, hailed Poblet as a “pioneer of cycling in Spain,” calling him an “admired cyclist, an example of tenacity and passion for the sport.”

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