Eddy Merckx was the big favorite to win the 1970 Tour de France which consisted of 23 stages over 4,358.3 km. This photo captures beautifully his concentration and focus during the 54 km Stage 23 individual time trial. In 1970 Merckx won his second Tour de France along with taking first in the Mountains Classification and second in the Points classification.
In 1970, Eddy Merckx became the third cyclist to win the Tour-Giro double in one year at only 25 years old; only Fausto Coppi and Jacques Anquetil had done it before. Merckx’s dominance in the 1970 Tour was so great, that race director Félix Lévitan attempted to introduce changes in order to make the race more competitive.
Despite our efforts to find the name of the photographer of this image, it currently remains a mystery. As was common practice at the time, original photographs often had no reference as to the name of the photographer. Rather, there were crop marks and other notations written on the back of the original photograph that was used in the print publication process. As always, we welcome any knowledge regarding the awesome photographers that so deftly captured and continue to capture the vibrant landscape of cycling.