Greg LeMond To Be Awarded U.S. Congressional Gold Medal
Three times Tour de France champion to be awarded one of North America’s highest civilian honors for a lifetime of success
American cyclist Greg LeMond is to be awarded the Congressional Gold Medal, one of North America’s two highest civilian honors, the other being the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Greg LeMond won the Tour de France three times, in 1986, 1989, and 1990. His victory in the 1989 Tour de France is the stuff of legends.
After three weeks of racing the gap between leader Laurent Fignon and LeMond on the final day was just 50 seconds. The race into Paris was an individual time trial. LeMond won using newly invented “aero” handlebars, with a margin of just eight seconds, the smallest overall gap ever between the Tour de France winner and the rider finishing second. The victory was even astonding considering that LeMond had recently recovered from a near-fatal hunting accident whereby he was shot.
The House of Representatives passed a vote on September 19 following the bill’s submission by Californian congressman Mike Thompson.
The bill still has to get past the U.S. Senate and be signed by President Donald Trump, but this is expected to be a formality. Greg LeMond was one of those who competed in President Trump's Tour de Trump in 1989, a 10-day 927-mile stage race on the U.S. East Coast which finished outside Trump Casino in Atlantic City.
Californian congressman Mike Thompson, who sponsored the bill said “Greg LeMond is a world-renowned cyclist and one of the greatest American athletes in history, the only American to win the Tour de France, LeMond’s career has been marked by victory after victory, selfless support for his teammates, and incredible comebacks, all while maintaining the highest standards of healthy athletics and clean competition. His career embodied some of our most cherished values — selflessness, perseverance, excellence, and sportsmanship — and LeMond has spent his life supporting children and young people, ensuring many others can experience the joy of cycling. Today I’m proud the House passed my bill to honor Greg LeMond’s lifetime of success, both as a cyclist and a stellar member of our community.”
“I am truly humbled to be recognized by the U.S. House of Representatives,” said LeMond, “Cycling changed my life for the better. The sport has the potential to help everyone be healthier and more active.”