Tour de France. Pascal Lino, memories of the yellow jersey [Vidéo] – Tour de France

Wearing the yellow jersey for more than ten days, eleven exactly for Pascal Lino, is not given to everyone. This epic of 1992 will remain the highlight of the Breton’s professional career. And yet, the day he donned the leader’s tunic in Bordeaux on stage three, his feelings were mixed. “I am 4th on the stage and I was almost disappointed. I knew I was taking the jersey because during the breakaway I was told that I was best placed overall. But I said to myself in my head: “OK, the jersey, I’m going to wear it for a day or two and then there you go, it’s forgotten”. While a stage victory, it remains, you are on the prize list. In addition, I take the jersey from my teammate Richard (Virenque). Already, the day after the prologue, I was in the breakaway and we were caught in the last kilometer. And in Bordeaux, it was the second time that it passed under my nose. The first days in yellow I can’t say I thought the happiest day of my life had arrived. I was mainly thinking about this missed opportunity to win a stage. The jersey was a bit of a comforting thing at the time. “

The weight of the jersey

And the more the days passed, the more Pascal Lino realized the impact of the jersey. “I was no longer seen as someone who had caught him on a river escape because I was fighting. I was told: “You can do in the five and even a podium of the Tour”. It wasn’t the same anymore. I defended him, in qualifying, in the mountains. “

The pressure and the weight of the jersey increased crescendo. “At the same time, it really transcended me. I think I’ve never been so motivated because, sometimes, it relaxes a bit, you’re going to eat two or three shits after the stage. There, I had a course of action, I was very careful about what I ate. I thought it was the chance of my life. In addition, it was a special year for the team as RMO filed for bankruptcy. We had no idea where we were going. There was visibility. “

It was also necessary to respond to numerous media requests and it is not always easy to manage. “I experienced it as someone who discovers, who is very happy with what is happening to him and who refuses nothing. Quite honestly, if it had been done over the years afterwards, I would have paid more attention to the level of recovery, because there, it was big nonsense. I was in demand all the time, on the massage table, on the day off. And we didn’t refuse anything as we were looking for a partner. I finished rinsed. “

The gratitude

This formidable life in yellow still follows Pascal Lino, ranked 5th overall. “We talk to me about it again but it’s starting to pass. My whole life is not based on this yellow jersey. But it’s true that this 1992 Tour changed a lot of things afterwards, especially the way people look, I felt I was being watched. As an anecdote, the following winter, I was in New Caledonia, we stopped for a drink on a terrace in a lost corner and a Kanak recognized me! Personally, it didn’t change me deeply, I remained myself. “But Pascal Lino still measures the magic of this jersey. “You are aware that you are the leader of the biggest test in the world, people recognize you. In the peloton, it makes your life easier too. We let you go up more easily, we do not come too “rub your face”, as they say. There are runners who have never worn it and who say to themselves that it is missing from their charts. Wearing it is a source of pride, a recognition. It was a great time in a sports career. “
His loss, in Sestriere, to the benefit of the future winner, Indurain, was not a heartbreak either. “I was still realistic, I knew it was going to happen. I was good but not strong enough to play in the big leagues. I have no regrets but I just thought that if it had happened to me a year or two later, I surely would have handled it a little differently. “

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