991km, 1 yellow jersey and $10,000 in debt: the incredible journey of one cyclist's historic Tour de France win

Marianne Martin's 1984 Tour de France was a world apart from today's Tour de France Femmes

Marianne Martin at the 1984 Tour de France
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Today, thousands of cycling fans across the world flipped on their TVs to tune in as a 154-rider peloton made its way from Collonges-La-Rouge in the center of France west to Montignac-Lascaux for the third stage of the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift. The quest for the iconic Maillot Jaune has gripped fans for more than three weeks already and it's not ever yet. The men's peloton has had its battle and now, the women take over to fight theirs. It almost feels like a given; the newness of a women's Tour de France already worn off after its momentous rebirth in 2022

But it's a race that was hard-fought for and one, that for the entirety of current yellow-jersey wearer Lotte Kopecky's life, didn't even exist. Should she manage to keep the leader's jersey through the end of the race, she will be the second winner in a span of 34 years, and only the eight name on the women’s Tour de France winner’s list — as opposed to 110 on the men's side. 

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Anne-Marije Rook
North American Editor

Cycling Weekly's North American Editor, Anne-Marije Rook is old school. She holds a degree in journalism and started out as a newspaper reporter — in print! She can even be seen bringing a pen and notepad to the press conference.

Originally from The Netherlands, she grew up a bike commuter and didn't find bike racing until her early twenties when living in Seattle, Washington. Strengthened by the many miles spent darting around Seattle's hilly streets on a steel single speed, Rook's progression in the sport was a quick one. As she competed at the elite level, her journalism career followed, and soon she became a full-time cycling journalist. She's now been a cycling journalist for 11 years.