Théodore Vienne, also known as Théo Vienne, (28 July 1864 – 1 March 1921) was a textile manufacturer in Roubaix who with Maurice Perez founded the Paris–Roubaix cycle race in 1896 (One of the oldest cycle races in the world.).
Roubaix is a city in northern France, located in the Lille metropolitan area. It is a historically mono-industrial commune in the Nord department, which grew rapidly in the 19th century from its textile industries, with most of the same characteristic features as those of English and American boom towns. This former new town has faced many challenges linked to deindustrialisation such as urban decay, with their related economic and social implications, since its major industries fell into decline by the middle of the 1970s. Located to the northeast of Lille, adjacent to Tourcoing, Roubaix is the chef-lieu of two cantons and the third largest city in the French region of Hauts-de-France ranked by population with nearly 96,000 inhabitants.
The Paris–Roubaix is a one-day professional men's bicycle road race in northern France, starting north of Paris and finishing in Roubaix, at the border with Belgium. It is one of cycling's oldest races, and is one of the 'Monuments' or classics of the European calendar, and contributes points towards the UCI World Ranking.
Vienne was born in Roubaix France on 28 July 1864.He was a sports entrepreneur, building Roubaix velodrome and the town's bullfighting ring. He also promoted Greco-Roman wrestling, professional boxing and billiards. He was described by the New York Times as "the leading fight promoter of France." He owned the Grande Roue de Paris (then the largest Ferris wheel in the world) and founded the 'Wonderland Français' sports arena in Luna Park, Paris.
A velodrome is an arena for track cycling. Modern velodromes feature steeply banked oval tracks, consisting of two 180-degree circular bends connected by two straights. The straights transition to the circular turn through a moderate easement curve.
Bullfighting is a physical contest that involves humans and animals attempting to publicly subdue, immobilise, or kill a bull, usually according to a set of rules, guidelines, or cultural expectations. There are many different forms and varieties in various locations around the world. Some forms involve dancing around or over a cow or bull, or attempting to grasp an object from the animal.
Greco-Roman (US) or Graeco-Roman (UK) wrestling is a style of wrestling that is practiced worldwide. It was contested at the first modern Olympic Games in 1896 and has been included in every edition of the summer Olympics held since 1908. This style of wrestling forbids holds below the waist; this is the major difference from freestyle wrestling, the other form of wrestling at the Olympics. This restriction results in an emphasis on throws because a wrestler cannot use trips to take an opponent to the ground, or avoid throws by hooking or grabbing the opponent's leg.
Vienne's father, Emmanuel Ignace Vienne, was born in Lille, on 23 April 1824. He died in Roubaix on 11 April 1873. His mother, Elisa Marie Joseph Lesur was born in Tourcoing on 24 November 1825 and died in Roubaix in 1878. His grandfather, Jean Baptiste Vienne, was born at Menin around 1786 and died at Ghent, Belgium, on 12 January 1830. His grandmother, Léocadie Potteuw, was born at Gheluwe, Belgium, in 1786 and died in Roubaix on 20 April 1859. Théodore Vienne was married in Bondues on 26 November 1887 to Louise Marie Crepel, who was born in Bondues on 21 January 1865.
Lille is a city at the northern tip of France, in French Flanders. On the Deûle River, near France's border with Belgium, it is the capital of the Hauts-de-France region, the prefecture of the Nord department, and the main city of the European Metropolis of Lille.
Tourcoing is a city in northern France on the Belgian border. It is designated municipally as a commune within the département of Nord. Located to the north-northeast of Lille, adjacent to Roubaix, Tourcoing is the chef-lieu of two cantons and the fourth largest city in the French region of Hauts-de-France ranked by population with about 94,000 inhabitants.
Menen is a municipality located in the Belgian province of West Flanders. The municipality comprises the city of Menen proper and the towns of Lauwe and Rekkem. The city is situated on the French/Belgian border. On January 1, 2006, Menen had a total population of 32,413. The total area is 33.07 km² which gives a population density of 980 inhabitants per km².
Roubaix, a town and now a suburb of Lille on the Belgian border of northern France, was a fast-growing industrial town in the 19th century.Its politics were strongly socialist and its mayor, Henri Carette, was the first Collectivist mayor in the country. His campaigns for a better life for workers included encouraging sports events. The Fédération Cyclopèdique du Nord was founded on 8 March 1890 as part of his work.
The first races were held on paths in Barbieux park but they proved dangerous to participants and to walkers in the park. Théodore Vienne and his friend and business associate, Maurice Perez, both cyclists, had a mill in the rue du Pays in the town. They organised their first race in 1894. Its success led them to build Roubaix velodrome on 46,000 square metres at the corner of the rue Verte and the route d'Hempempont.It opened on Sunday 9 June 1895 to shouts from the crowd of "Vive Roubaix!" It stood opposite a fashionable horse-racing society and beside a tramway to bring spectators from the centre of town. The track's suspended bankings were considered architecturally avant-garde.
Vienne — described as "immensely rich" — and Perez held several meetings on the track, one including the first appearance in France by the American sprinter Major Taylor, then looked for further ideas.
Marshall Walter "Major" Taylor was an American professional cyclist. He was born and raised in Indianapolis, where he worked in bicycle shops and began racing multiple distances in the track and road disciplines of cycling. As a teenager, he moved to Worcester, Massachusetts with his trainer and had a successful amateur career, which included breaking track records.
In February 1896 they hit on holding a race from Paris to their track. It gave them two problems. The first was that the biggest races started or ended in Paris and that Roubaix would be seen as too provincial a destination. The second was that they could organise the start or the finish but not both. They spoke to Louis Minart, the editor of Le Vélo , the only daily sports paper. Minart was enthusiastic but said the decision of whether the paper would run the start and provide publicity belonged to the director, Paul Rousseau.Minart may also have suggested an indirect approach because the mill owners recommended their race not on its own merits but as preparation for another. They wrote:
Dear M. Rousseau, Bordeaux–Paris is approaching and this great annual event which has done so much to promote cycling has given us an idea. What would you think of a training race which preceded Bordeaux–Paris by four weeks? The distance between Paris and Roubaix is roughly 280km, so it would be child's play for the future participants of Bordeaux–Paris. The finish would take place at the Roubaix vélodrome after several laps of the track. Everyone would be assured of an enthusiastic welcome as most of our citizens have never had the privilege of seeing the spectacle of a major road race and we count on enough friends to believe that Roubaix is truly a hospitable town. As prizes we already have subscribed to a first prize of 1,000 francs in the name of the Roubaix velodrome and we will be busy establishing a generous prize list which will be to the satisfaction of all. But for the moment, can we count on the patronage of Le Vélo and on your support for organising the start?
The first prize represented seven months' wages for a miner. — later deputy organiser of the Tour de France and a leading official of the Union Cycliste Internationale — continued by bike. The wind blew, the rain fell and the temperature dropped. Breyer reached Roubaix filthy and exhausted after a day of riding in disjointed cobbles. He swore he would send a telegram to Minart urging him to drop the idea, saying it was dangerous to send a race the way he had just ridden. But that evening a meal and drinks with the team from Roubaix changed his mind.Rousseau was enthusiastic and sent his cycling editor, Victor Breyer, to find a route. Breyer travelled to Amiens in a Panhard driven by his colleague, Paul Meyan. The following morning Breyer
Vienne was a successful textile industrialist — described as "fabulously rich" — and a sports entrepreneur, building not only the velodrome but a successful torodrome (bullfighting ring). On 14 July 1899, France's national day, a huge crowd attended a 'fight' between a lion and a bull, but it was a fiasco because the animals would not fight. He then started promoting Greco-Roman wrestling, professional boxing and billiards. His sports empire expanded and his promotional posters were prominent at the 1911 World's Fair in Paris.
Vienne was director and owner of the Grande Roue de Paris, ('Great Wheel of Paris'), a 100m-high Ferris wheel built in 1900 for the world exhibition.It was demolished in 1920 , but almost 100 years passed between its construction and a taller wheel being built.
In 1907, he founded the Wonderland Français with Robert Coquelle and Victor Breyer, a sports stadium at Luna Park, Paris.The New York Times reported in 1913:
Jack Johnson, heavyweight champion, was matched to-day to fight Frank Moran in this city during the second week of January, 1914, for the heavyweight championship of the world. Two clubs, the Nouveau Cirque and the Wonderland Francais, are now bidding for the match, and the decision will be made known Saturday.
The Nouveau Cirque, which holds its bouts at the Velodrome d'Hiver in Passy, will seat 30,000 persons, and it has offered Johnson 50 percent of the gross receipts, with 25 percent for Moran. The Wonderland Club, which is under the control of Theodore Vienne, the leading fight promoter of France, will submit its bid tomorrow. It is said that both parties favor Vienne's club, as the fight would be held in Luna Park, Paris, thereby drawing a great society crowd.
Vienne died in the 15th arrondissement of Paris and is buried in the cimetière du Père-Lachaise in Parisalthough his name is not listed on official records.
Maurice-François Garin was an Italian-born French road bicycle racer best known for winning the inaugural Tour de France in 1903, and for being stripped of his title in the second Tour in 1904 along with eight others, for cheating.
Tom Boonen is a Belgian former road bicycle racer, who competed as a professional between 2002 and 2017 for the U.S. Postal Service and Quick-Step Floors teams. Boonen won the 2005 UCI World Road Race Championships, and was a single-day road specialist with a strong finishing sprint. He won the cycling monuments Paris–Roubaix 4 times and the Tour of Flanders 3 times, among many other prestigious victories, such as prevailing 5 times in the E3 Harelbeke, winning 6 stages of the Tour de France and winning the Overall title of the Tour of Qatar 4 times.
Johan Vansummeren is a Belgian former professional road racing cyclist who last rode for AG2R La Mondiale in the UCI World Tour.
Peter Post was a Dutch professional cyclist whose career lasted from 1956 to 1972. Post competed in road and track racing. As a rider he is best remembered for Six-day racing, having competed in 155 races and won 65. Because of this success he was known as “De Keizer van de Zesdaagse” or “The Emperor of the Six Days”. In road racing his main achievements were winning the 1964 Paris–Roubaix and becoming national road race champion in 1963. He was on the podium three times at the La Flèche Wallonne but never won. Post’s other nickname was “de Lange” or “Big Man” because he was tall for a cyclist. After retiring from racing he had success as a Directeur sportif. Peter Post died in Amsterdam on 14 January 2011.
Marc Demeyer was a professional road racing cyclist from Avelgem, Belgium. He died of a heart attack at the age of 31.
Hippolyte Aucouturier was a French professional road bicycle racer. Aucouturier, a professional between 1900 and 1908, won two stages at the first Tour de France in 1903 and won three stages and finished second in the 1905 Tour de France. He also won Paris–Roubaix twice, in 1903 and 1904. His elder brother Francois was also a racing cyclist.
Jules Rossi was an Italian professional road bicycle racer. Rossi became an orphan at the age of six and came to France to live in the town of Nogent-sur-Marne with the rest of his family. He started serious cycling at the age of 14 in 1928 and by 1933 had become one of the top amateurs in France riding for the Velo Club de Levallois. In 1934 Rossi turned professional for the Alcyon-Dunlop team of Ludovic Feuillet. He soon turned in some impressive performances as a professional winning the Circuit of the Allier in 1935 and Paris-St Etienne in 1936. In 1936 he finished fifth in Paris–Roubaix and in 1937 he became the first Italian to win that cobbled classic at the age of just 23. In 1938 he won Paris–Tours in a record average speed for a professional race of 42.092 km per hour, being awarded the Ruban Jaune for that achievement. Also in 1938 Rossi won Stage 6A of the Tour de France between Bordeaux and Arcachon. Rossi continued to race throughout the years of World War II winning Paris-Reims twice and the Grand Prix des Nations in 1941.
Luna Park was an amusement park near Porte Maillot in Paris, France from 1907 to 1931. Features of the park included a shoot-the-chutes ride, a scenic railway, "Le Chatouilleur", a river ride through the mountain that was the base of the scenic railway, and a dance hall. An additional attraction was named the Brooklyn Bridge. Its operating hours were from 1:00 p.m. to midnight.
The first edition of Paris–Roubaix, a classic one-day cycle race in France, was held on 19 April 1896. The event covered 280 km (174 mi) from Paris to the velodrome in Roubaix. The winner was German Josef Fischer who received 1.000 francs for the win, a considerable sum of money at the time. The race, as were all editions until 1909, was motorpaced.
Le Vélo was the leading French sports newspaper from its inception on 1 December 1892 until it ceased publication in 1904. Mixing sports reporting with news and political comment, it achieved a circulation of 80,000 copies a day. Its use of sporting events as promotional tools led to the creation of the Paris–Roubaix cycle race in 1896, and the popularisation of the Bordeaux–Paris cycle race during the 1890s.
The Ruban Jaune(English; Yellow Ribbon) is a cycling trophy created in 1936 by Henri Desgrange, awarded to the rider recording the fastest average speed in a professional cycling race or stage longer than 200 km. The trophy’s name is thought is to have come from comparison with the Blue Riband trophy awarded to the passenger liner crossing the Atlantic Ocean in record time. Desgrange changed the colour to yellow to reflect the newsprint of L'Auto, the sports newspaper he edited. The timing of the record must be by two independent timekeepers using certified timing equipment which has been recently calibrated. Because of these strict rules it was unofficially accepted in the latter part of the 20th century that only times in classic races would be accepted.
The 2015 Paris–Roubaix was the 113th edition of the Paris–Roubaix one-day race. It took place on 12 April and was the tenth race of the 2015 UCI World Tour. It was won by John Degenkolb in a sprint ahead of Zdeněk Štybar and Greg Van Avermaet. Degenkolb became only the second German to win the race, after Josef Fischers victory at the very first edition 119 years earlier.
The 1920 Paris–Roubaix was the 21st edition of the Paris–Roubaix, a classic one-day cycle race in France. The single day event was held on 4 April 1920 and stretched 280 km (174 mi) from Paris to its end in a velodrome in Roubaix. The winner was the Belgian Paul Deman.
The 1929 Paris–Roubaix was the 30th edition of the Paris–Roubaix, a classic one-day cycle race in France. The single day event was held on 31 March 1929 and stretched 260 km (162 mi) from Paris to its end in a velodrome in Roubaix. The winner was Charles Meunier from Belgium.
The 1930 Paris–Roubaix was the 31st edition of the Paris–Roubaix, a classic one-day cycle race in France. The single day event was held on 20 April 1930 and stretched 258 km (160 mi) from Paris to its end in a velodrome in Roubaix. The winner was Julien Vervaecke from Belgium.
The 1932 Paris–Roubaix was the 33rd edition of the Paris–Roubaix, a classic one-day cycle race in France. The single day event was held on 27 March 1932 and stretched 255 km (158 mi) from Paris to its end in a velodrome in Roubaix. The winner was Romain Gijssels from Belgium.
The 1954 Paris–Roubaix was the 52nd edition of the Paris–Roubaix, a classic one-day cycle race in France. The single day event was held on 11 April 1954 and stretched 246 km (153 mi) from Paris to the finish at Roubaix Velodrome. The winner was Raymond Impanis from Belgium.
The 1958 Paris–Roubaix was the 56th edition of the Paris–Roubaix, a classic one-day cycle race in France. The single day event was held on 13 April 1958 and stretched 269 km (167 mi) from Paris to the finish at Roubaix Velodrome. The winner was Leon Vandaele from Belgium.
The Stade Amédée-Prouvost is an ancient stadium in Wattrelos, in the Northern Department. It was built in 1923.