Wielermuseum Roeselare - ©Stefaan Beel

In 2013, the Tour of Flanders celebrates its 100th birthday; however, the Tour de France is also celebrating its centenary this year, and the WieMu is showcasing the latter’s 100th birthday with an exhibition featuring one hundred objects: one for each Tour since 1903.

Lucien Buysse’s ribbon, comics by Thomas Pips, Johan Museeuw’s Crédit Lyonnais lion and many other memorabilia create a unique display of large and small, heroic and tragic stories, with many Flemish Tour heroes in the spotlight

The one hundred objects, from the museum collection as well as from several private collections, are displayed in chronological order. One of the exhibition’s crown jewels takes the form of several handwritten results sheets from 1903, featuring distinguished names such as Marcel Kerff and Julien Lootens, the first Flemish cyclists to participate in the very first Tour de France and who finished in sixth and seventh position. In the Tour gallery hangs an original Eddy Merckx yellow jersey from 1972. Even though the five-time winner led the Tour classification 96 times and wore just as many yellow jerseys, today, they are very scarce as not many were preserved at the time. Even Eddy Merckx himself is on the lookout for one!

What’s appealing is the fact that each object has its own story to tell. In the exhibition, you can see leader’s, country and brand jerseys, bicycles, trophies, race numbers, victory flags, newspapers, photographs and even a personalised Marcel Kint cigarette case to commemorate the 1936 Tour de France and a postcard with the message “groetjes uit de Tour” (greetings from the Tour), signed by Godefroot, Reybrouck and other Flemish Tour de France participants.

There is also a catalogue to accompany the exhibition, available in three languages: Dutch, French and English. The National Cycling Museum, Polenplein 15 in Roeselare, is open every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (except for Sunday and Monday).

Back to top