Saint-Jean-de-Monts, 24 June 1976. The 63rd Tour of France turned out to be a real victory procession for the Belgians. Lucien Van Impe did indeed win the Tour de France but that year another Belgian was in the spotlight. Freddy Maertens proved to be the strongest cyclist in eight stages. The cyclist from West Flanders was the Belgian champion in 1976, but was set to swap his champion's jersey for a yellow one for nine days in the Tour de France. He won the prologue in Saint-Jean-de-Monts and claimed the yellow jersey that early on in the race. He also won the first stage. And on top of that the third stage, where he wiped the floor with his opponents during the time trial, as well as the 7th stage, the 18th stages A and B, the 21st stage, plus the 22 stage A l. In Paris Maertens received the green jersey as a reflection of all his stage triumphs.