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Rik Van Looy

Biographical information

Medals OG
Gold 1
Silver 0
Bronze 0
Total 1
TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameHendrik "Rik"•Van Looy
Used nameRik•Van Looy
Nick/petnamesDe Keizer van Herentals, Rik II
Born20 December 1933 in Herentals (BEL)
NOC(s) Belgium


Prior to Eddy Merckx, Rik Van Looy won more classics than any professional cyclist ever. This was mainly due to his tremendous ability as a road sprinter, unmatched in the peloton at the time. Only the Grand Prix des Nations (a time trial) and the Bordeaux-Paris are missing from his list of victories in classics. Van Looy’s lack of strength as a time trialist was his greatest weakness and cost him in the grand tours. He was not a great climber, though he was better than average. Van Looy also won 11 six-day races, nine of them with Peter Post. Van Looy is one of only three riders to have won all five monument races, the best known of the one-day classics, along with Merckx and Roger De Vlaeminck.

Van Looy was twice a winner at the World Championship road race, winning in 1960-61. In the grand tours, he won the points classification at the 1963 Tour de France and the 1959 and 1965 Vuelta a España, and the mountains classification at the 1960 Giro d’Italia. His major one-day victories were as follows: 1958 Milano-Sanremo; 1959, 1962 Ronde van Vlaanderen; 1955-57, 1962 Gent-Wevelgem; 1961-62, 1965 Paris-Roubaix; 1968 La Flèche Wallonne; 1961 Liège-Bastogne-Liège; 1956, 1958 Paris-Brussels; 1959, 1967 Paris-Tours; and 1959 Giro di Lombardia.


Games Discipline (Sport) Event Status Team Pos Details
1952 Summer Olympics Cycling Road (Cycling) Road Race, Individual, Men Olympic AC Representing Belgium    
  Road Race, Team, Men Olympic Belgium 1 Gold