The yellow jersey worn by the leader of the Tour de France
Example usage: The maillot jaune gives the wearer a special status in the cycling world.
Most used in: France, particularly during the Tour de France.
Most used by: Professional cyclists and cycling fans.
Comedy Value: 2
What is the Meaning of Maillot Jaune in Cycling?
Maillot Jaune is a French term used in cycling to refer to the yellow jersey. The jersey is worn by the leader of the general classification in the Tour de France, which is the most prestigious cycling race in the world.
The yellow jersey was introduced in the 1919 Tour de France, and has since become an iconic symbol of the race. It is awarded to the cyclist who has the lowest accumulated time over the course of the race. This is determined by adding up the times of each stage and subtracting the time bonuses for stage wins.
The yellow jersey is a coveted prize among professional cyclists, as it is a sign of their dominance in the race. It is also a major draw for spectators; over 12 million people attended the Tour de France in 2019, with many of them coming to watch the leader in the yellow jersey.
In addition to the Tour de France, the yellow jersey is also worn by the leader of the general classification in some other cycling races, such as the Giro d'Italia and the Vuelta a España. The jersey is also worn by the leader of the points classification in the Tour de France.
The Origins of the ‘Maillot Jaune’: A Brief History of Cycling's Iconic Yellow Jersey
The iconic yellow jersey of the Tour de France is an instantly recognisable symbol of the world’s most famous cycling race. But where did it come from and why is it yellow?
The first use of the ‘maillot jaune’ (or yellow jersey), as it is known in French, dates back to 1919. The race’s organiser, Henri Desgrange, was inspired by the colour of the pages of the L’Auto newspaper, which had been sponsoring the Tour since its inception in 1903. Desgrange wanted to make the race leader more visible to the spectators, and so he chose yellow as the colour of the jersey.
The first ever ‘maillot jaune’ was worn by Eugène Christophe, a French cyclist who won the race in 1919. Since then, the yellow jersey has become a symbol of the Tour de France, and is worn with pride by the race leader as they make their way around the challenging 3,500km course.
The 'maillot jaune' is now one of the most iconic pieces of clothing in sport, and is a lasting reminder of the courage and determination of the cyclists who have tackled the Tour de France since 1919.