Mark Cavendish’s fourth stage win at the 2008 Tour makes him the only rider in the current peloton to have achieved this feat. Alessandro Petacchi managed it in 2003, but is serving a doping suspension.

But where does this put Cavendish in the all-time list of stage winners in a single Tour?

Although many riders have won five or more stages in a single Tour, the majority were in pre-war races. Counting postwar Tours, riders have won five or more stages on only 16 different occasions.

But Cavendish is still in exalted company. He’s equalled Lance Armstrong’s performance in the 1999, 2001 and 2002 Tours, Bernard Hinault in 1981 and Eddy Merckx in 1971. If he surprises us, and sticks around to the end of the race, another win will put him only three behind the all-time record of eight, jointly held by Eddy Merckx, Freddy Maertens and Charles Pélissier.

STAGE WINS IN A SINGLE TOUR

Postwar wins in bold

Eight stages

Freddy Maertens 1976

Eddy Merckx 1970, 1974


Charles Pélissier 1930

Seven stages

Bernard Hinault 1979

Eddy Merckx 1969

Gino Bartali 1948

Six stages

Luis Ocana 1973

Eddy Merckx 1972


Réné Le Grevès 1936

André Leducq 1932

Jean Aerts 1933

Marcel Buysse 1913

François Faber 1909

Emile Georget 1907

Five stages

Mark Cavendish 2009

Lance Armstrong 2004

Laurent Fignon 1984

Bernard Hinault 1981

Freddy Maertens 1981

Didi Thurau 1977

Andre Darrigade 1958

Fausto Coppi 1952

Hugo Koblet 1951


Roger Lapébie 1934

Georges Speicher 1934

Learco Guerra 1933

Raffaele Di Paco 1931

Charles Pélissier 1931

André Leducq 1929

Nicolas Frantz 1928

Philippe Thys 1922

Jean Alavoine 1919

Lucien Petit-Breton 1908

Réné Pottier 1906

Louis Trousselier 1905

Four stages

Mark Cavendish 2008

A. Petacchi 2003

Lance Armstrong 2002, 2001, 1999

Mario Cipollini 1999

Tom Steels 1998

J-P Van Poppel 1988

Bernard Hinault 1982

Cyrille Guimard 1972

Eddy Merckx 1971

Jacques Anquetil 1964, 1963

Edward Sels 1964

Rik Van Looy 1963

Andre Darrigade 1961

Jean Graczyk 1960

Charly Gaul 1958

R. Hassenforder 1956


M. Archambaud 1939

Félicien Vervaecke 1938

Eloi Meulenberg 1937

Sylvère Maes 1936

Jean Aerts 1935

René Le Grevès 1935, 1934

René Vietto 1934

Raffaele Di Paco 1932

Learco Guerra 1930

André Leducq 1928

Nicolas Frantz 1926, 1925

Ottavia Bottecchia 1925, 1924

Louis Mottiat 1921

Philippe Thys 1920

Honoré Berthélemy 1919

Paul Duboc 1911

Octave Lapize 1910

François Faber 1908

Louis Trousselier 1906