Charly Gaul bigraphy, stories - Luxembourgian racing cyclist

Charly Gaul : biography

8 December 1932 - 6 December 2005

Charly Gaul (born Pfaffenthal, Luxembourg, 8 December 1932 – died Luxembourg City, 6 December 2005) was a professional cyclist. He was a national cyclo-cross champion, an accomplished time triallist and a better climber. His ability earned him the nickname of The Angel of the Mountains in the 1958 Tour de France, which he won with four stage victories. He also won the Giro d'Italia in 1956 and 1959. Gaul rode best in cold, wet weather. In later life he became a recluse and lost much of his memory.

Mountains crossed alone

France

  • Romeyere, 1954. Stage – Lyon–Grenoble
  • Aravis, 1955. Stage – Thonon les Bains–Briançon
  • Galibier, 1955. Stage – Thonon les Bains–Briançon
  • Télégraphe, 1955. Stage – Thonon les Bains–Briançon
  • Cayolle, 1955. Stage – Briançon–Monaco
  • Vasson (col), 1955. Stage – Briançon–Monaco
  • Aspin, 1955. Stage – Toulouse–St Gaudens
  • Peyresourde, 1955. Stage – Toulouse–St Gaudens
  • Aubisque, 1955. Stage – St Gaudens–Pau
  • Portet d'Aspet, 1956. Stage – Luchon–Toulouse
  • Latrape, 1956. Stage – Luchon–Toulouse
  • Sestrières, 1956. Stage – Gap–Turin
  • Luitel, 1956. Stage – Turin–Grenoble
  • Ventoux, 1958.
  • Cucheron, 1961. Stage – St Etienne–Grenoble
  • Granier, 1961. Stage – St Etienne–Grenoble
  • Porte, 1961. Stage – St Etienne–Grenoble
  • Vars, 1955. Stage – Briançon–Monaco
  • Porte, 1958. Stage – Briançon–Aix les Bains
  • Galibier, 1959. Stage – Le Lautaret–St Vincent (Ita)

Italy

  • Palena, 1956. Stage – Pescara–Campobasso
  • Basilica di San Luca, 1956. Stage – Livorno–Lucca
  • Costalunga, 1956. Stage – Meran–Monte Bondone
  • Rolle, 1956. Stage – Meran–Monte Bondone
  • Brocon, 1956. Stage – Meran–Monte Bondone
  • Bondone, 1956. Stage – Meran–Monte Bondone
  • Boscochiesa Nuova, 1957. Stage – Verona–Boscochiesa Nuova
  • Grand St Bernard, 1957. Stage – Saint Vincent–Sion (Swi)
  • Brocon, 1957. Stage – Trento–Levico Terme
  • Abetone, 1959. Stage – Salsomaggiore–Abetone
  • Vesuvio, 1959. Stage – Escalade du Vesuve
  • Eremo, 1959. Stage – Circuit de San Marino
  • Fugazze, 1959. Stage – Verona–Rovereto
  • Rolle, 1959. Stage – Trento-Bolzano
  • Grand St Bernard, 1959. Stage – Aosta-Courmayeur
  • Petit St Bernard, 1959. Stage – Aosta-Courmayeur
  • Terminillo, 1960, Stage – Pescara-Rieti
  • Stelvio, 1961. Stage – Trento-Bormio

Notes

Personality

Gaul was taciturn and spoke rarely to anyone but a circle including Anglade, Roger Hassenforder, Nencini and Bahamontes. The writer Philippe Brunel described his reputation within cycling as "notorious" [sulfureuse]. "His eloquence and assurance seemed reserved for the bike, and the bike alone," said Charlie Woods.Alchin, Richard and Bell, Adrian (eds), Golden Stages of the Tour de France, Mousehold Press, UK, ISBN 1-874739-28-5, p45

Gaul was popular with fans but not among his rivals. Roger St Pierre said: "With his boyish good looks and Jack the Giantkiller style, Charly Gaul was loved by the fans. He had his friends, too – his faithful lieutenant Marcel Ernzer even rode an identical bike so that his master would not be uncomfortable if he had to borrow it after a crash or a puncture.Gaul was said to have been especially popular with married women in Italy, receiving up to 60 letters some days. The story, possibly apocryphal, is that they were given to Ernzer to read. Some were so frank that Ernzer is said to have sworn never to marry. But he was not always popular with his rivals, his unpredictable, schoolboyish temperament, his lazy riding on the flat and his sometimes insufferable ego winning him few allies in the bunch."St Pierre, Roger (UK), unidentified cutting

Living octopus

Living octopus

In countries which are located near sea coasts, sea food is an important part of national cuisine