Who won the Tour de France Yellow Jersey?

Founder, Mr. Mamil

The Tour de France General Classification winner is the rider who finished the race in the shortest time among all participants. He is also known as the maillot jaune and is also called the overall winner.

It’s important to make this distinction as there are many competitions within the Tour de France such as Points Classification, Climber’s Classification, Young Rider Classification, and Team Classification among others.

Tour de France winners, 1903 to 2022

Jonas Vingegaard wins Tour de France in 2022
Jonas Vingegaard wins Tour de France in 2022

Jonas Vinegagaard from Team Jumbo-Visma won the 2022 Tour de France.

Tour de France winners, 1903 to 2022

Riders with the most Tour de France wins

From the 1950s onwards, each decade is often defined by a dominant cyclist who won the General Classification multiple times. They dominated for a period ranging from five to seven years during their peak.

The average General Classification winner age is 28.

There are only five riders who have won the Tour de France General Classification five or more times.

  • Louison Bobet won in 1953, 1954, and 1955.
  • Jacques Anquetil dominated the early to mid-60s, winning in 1957, 1961, 1962, 1963, and 1964.
  • Eddy Merckx, who is often referred to as the best cyclist of all time, dominated the late 60s to mid-70s, winning in 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, and 1974.
  • Bernard Hinault (1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1985) and Laurent Fignon (1984, 1985) had a fierce rivalry in the late 70s to mid-80s.
  • Greg Lemond was the first American winner who won in 1986, 1989, and 1990.
  • Miguel Indurain dominated the early to mid-90s, winning in 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, and 1995.
  • Lance Armstrong won seven Tour de France in a row (1999 to 2005) with the US Postal Team, but was stripped of all the wins in 2012 after admitting to doping violations.
  • Chris Froome dominated the mid-2010s, winning in 2013, 2015, 2016, and 2017.
  • Tadej Pogacar won back to back in 2020 and 2021 while still being 22 years old.
Lance ArmstrongUnited States71999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005
Jacques AnquetilFrance51957, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964
Eddy MerckxBelgium51969, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1974
Bernard HinaultFrance51978, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1985
Miguel IndurainSpain51991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995
Chris FroomeGreat Britain42013, 2015, 2016, 2017
Philippe ThysBelgium31913, 1914, 1920
Louison BobetFrance31953, 1954, 1955
Greg LeMondUnited States31986, 1989, 1990
Lucien Petit-BretonFrance21907, 1908
Firmin LambotBelgium21919, 1922
Ottavio BottecchiaItaly21924, 1925
Nicolas FrantzLuxembourg21927, 1928
André LeducqFrance21930, 1932
Antonin MagneFrance21931, 1934
Sylvère MaesBelgium21936, 1939
Fausto CoppiItaly21949, 1952
Bernard ThévenetFrance21975, 1977
Laurent FignonFrance21983, 1984
Alberto ContadorSpain22007, 2009
Tadej PogačarSlovenia22020, 2021
Riders with the most Tour de France wins

Oldest Tour de France winners

The oldest General Classification winner was Firmin Lambot in 1922, aged 36.

In the last 10 years, Cadel Evans won in 2011 (aged 34), Bradley Wiggins in 2012 (aged 32), Chris Froome in 2017 (aged 32), and Geraint Thomas in 2018 (aged 32).

Riders aged 32 and over are often considered past their peak years and are on the decline in modern professional cycling. There are 19 of the 108 editions (17.6%) where a rider aged 32 and above has won the General Classification.

Firmin LambotBelgium361922
Lucien BuysseBelgium341926
Gino BartaliItaly341948
Joop ZoetemelkNetherlands341980
Lance ArmstrongUnited States342005
Cadel EvansAustralia342011
Firmin LambotBelgium331919
Léon ScieurBelgium331921
Henri PélissierFrance331923
Maurice De WaeleBelgium331929
Fausto CoppiItaly331952
Lance ArmstrongUnited States332004
Carlos SastreSpain332008
Maurice GarinFrance321903
Bjarne RiisDenmark321996
Lance ArmstrongUnited States322003
Bradley WigginsGreat Britain322012
Chris FroomeGreat Britain322017
Geraint ThomasGreat Britain322018
Oldest Tour de France winners

Youngest Tour de France winners

The youngest General Classification winner was Henri Cornet 1904, aged 20.

In recent years, Egan Bernal won in 2019 (aged 22), and Tadej Pogacar in 2020 (aged 21). They also won the Youth Classification during these years as they were under 26 years old.

Riders aged 26 and below have won 35 of the 108 editions so far (32.4%). 26 years old is the cut-off age for the Youth Classification.

Henri CornetFrance201904
Octave LapizeFrance211910
Tadej PogačarSlovenia212020
François FaberLuxembourg221909
Romain MaesBelgium221935
Egan BernalColombia222019
Tadej PogačarSlovenia222021
Philippe ThysBelgium231913
Philippe ThysBelgium231914
Jacques AnquetilFrance231957
Felice GimondiItaly231965
Laurent FignonFrance231983
Louis TrousselierFrance241905
Lucien Petit-BretonFrance241907
Odile DefrayeBelgium241912
Gino BartaliItaly241938
Eddy MerckxBelgium241969
Bernard HinaultFrance241978
Laurent FignonFrance241984
Jan UllrichGermany241997
Alberto ContadorSpain242007
Lucien Petit-BretonFrance251908
Lucien AimarFrance251966
Eddy MerckxBelgium251970
Bernard HinaultFrance251979
Greg LeMondUnited States251986
Andy SchleckLuxembourg252010
André LeducqFrance261930
Georges SpeicherFrance261933
Roger LapébieFrance261937
Jean RobicFrance261947
Hugo KobletSwitzerland261951
Charly GaulLuxembourg261958
Eddy MerckxBelgium261971
Alberto ContadorSpain262009
Youngest Tour de France winners

Fastest winning times

The top 10 fastest times in Tour de France were all achieved after the year 2000 with the exception of 1988 by Pedro Delgado (84h 27′ 53″). Four of the top 5 times were achieved in the last five years.

Jonas Vingegaard from Team Jumbo-Visma set the fastest ever time in 2022, finsihing the 3,328km race in 79h 32′ 29″ with an average speed 41.84km/h. It was also the only time where the total time is below 80 hours.

This is then closely followed by Lance Armstrong, in 2002, finishing the 3,276km race in 82h 05′ 12″ with an average speed of 39.93km/h, and Tadej Pogacar in 2021 with 82h 56′ 36″ (41.165km/h average speed).

More reading : Fastest Tour de France Time Trial Average Speed
WinnerNationalityWinning timeYear
Jonas VingegaardDenmark79h 32′ 29″2022
Lance ArmstrongUnited States82h 05′ 12″2002
Tadej PogačarSlovenia82h 56′ 36″2021
Egan BernalColombia82h 57′ 00″2019
Geraint ThomasGreat Britain83h 17′ 13″2018
Lance ArmstrongUnited States83h 36′ 02″2004
Lance ArmstrongUnited States83h 41′ 12″2003
Chris FroomeGreat Britain83h 56′ 20″2013
Pedro DelgadoSpain84h 27′ 53″1988
Chris FroomeGreat Britain84h 46′ 14″2015
Alberto ContadorSpain85h 48′ 35″2009
Fastest winning times

Slowest winning times

The slowest time in the Tour de France is almost three times as long as the fastest time. All the top 10 slowest times happened between 1914 and 1927 before the advancement in bike technologies, nutrition, training, and team tactics.

WinnerNationalityWinning timeYear
Lucien BuysseBelgium238h 44′ 25″1926
Firmin LambotBelgium231h 07′ 15″1919
Philippe ThysBelgium228h 36′ 13″1920
Ottavio BottecchiaItaly226h 18′ 21″1924
Henri PélissierFrance222h 15′ 30″1923
Firmin LambotBelgium222h 08′ 06″1922
Léon ScieurBelgium221h 50′ 26″1921
Ottavio BottecchiaItaly219h 10′ 18″1925
Philippe ThysBelgium200h 28′ 48″1914
Nicolas FrantzLuxembourg198h 16′ 42″1927
Slowest winning times

Countries with the most wins

There are 64 different winners from 15 countries.

  • French riders have the most wins at 33. The last French winner was Bernard Hinault in 1985.
  • Belgium riders have 18 wins with Lucien Van Impe being the last winner in 1976.
  • Spanish riders won 12 times with Alberto Contador in 2009.
  • American and Italian riders won 10 times each. Lance Armstrong was the last American winner in 2005 and Vincenzo Nibali was the last Italian winner in 2014.
  • Bradley Wiggins was the first British rider to win the Tour de France in 2012 and followed by Chris Froome and lastly Geraint Thomas in 2018.
  • Cadel Evans is the only Australian to win in 2011, and Egan Bernal (Colombia) is the sole South American winner in 2019.
CountryWinsLast winWinner
France361985Bernard Hinault
Belgium181976Lucien Van Impe
Spain122009Alberto Contador
United States102005Lance Armstrong
Italy102014Vincenzo Nibali
Great Britain62018Geraint Thomas
Luxembourg52010Andy Schleck
Countries with the most wins
Alex Lee at Mr.Mamil

Alex Lee is the founder and editor-at-large of Mr. Mamil. Coming from a professional engineering background, he breaks down technical cycling nuances into an easy-to-understand and digestible format here.

He has been riding road bikes actively for the past 12 years and started racing competitively in the senior category during the summer recently.