Combativity award in the Tour de France

Combativity award
Jersey red number.svg
Sport Road bicycle racing
Competition Tour de France
Given for Most aggressive rider
Local name Le Prix de la combativité  (French)
First award 1952
Editions 68 known (as of 2020)
First winner  Wout Wagtmans (NED)
Most wins  Eddy Merckx (BEL)
4 times
Most recent  Marc Hirschi (SUI)

The combativity award is a prize given in the Tour de France for the most combative rider overall during the race. Historically, it favored constant attackers as it was based on the distance spent in a breakaway, included winning checkpoints and outright stage wins. Today, the winner is chosen by a jury.[1] Besides the overall winner, the jury also awards a combativity award to the most aggressive rider at the end of each stage, with this rider allowed to wear a red bib the following race day.

The 1981 Tour de France marked the last time the winner of the general classification also won the combativity award.


Since 1952,[2] after every stage the most combative cyclist was given an award, and an overall competition was recorded.[3] At the end of the 1956 Tour de France, André Darrigade was named the most attacking cyclist.[4] At this point, the award was given the same importance as the award for the cyclist with the most bad luck, Picot in 1956.

In 1961, the award was not given to an individual cyclist, but to an entire team, the regional team West-South-West.

The system of the award has changed during the years. Historically, riders accumulated points, and the cyclist with the most points at the end of the Tour was declared winner.[5] The cyclist did not have to finish the race, for example in 1971 Luis Ocaña crashed out while wearing the Yellow Jersey on the Col de Mente in stage 14 and in 1972 Cyrille Guimard was wearing the Green Jersey and in 2nd place overall when he withdrew, but both were still given the combativity award.

In 1979, the combativity award was initially given to Joop Zoetemelk;[6] he was later disqualified and Hennie Kuiper received the award.

In a system that was implemented 2003, a jury of eight specialists in cycling selected the most combative cyclist of each stage (excluding time trials), with the classification for most distance in breakaway groups only part of the decision.[7]

There is no jersey for the most combative rider of the previous stage, but he can be recognized by the race number worn on his back: it consists of a white number on a red background instead of the usual black on white (since 1998).[7][8]

At the end of the Tour de France, a "super-combativity award" is given to the most combative cyclist of the race. As of 2017, the total prize money for the super-combativity award winner is €20,000.[9]


Overall super-combativity award winners since 1953.[10]

Year Country Rider Team
1953[11]  Netherlands Wout Wagtmans Netherlands
1954[12]  France Lucien Lazaridès (victory shared with François Mahé) France South-East
1954[12]  France François Mahé (victory shared with Lucien Lazaridès) France West
1955[13]  Luxembourg Charly Gaul Luxembourg/Mixed
1956  France André Darrigade France
1957  France Nicolas Barone France Île-de-France
1958  Spain Federico Bahamontes Spain
1959  France Gérard Saint France West South-West
1960  France Jean Graczyk France
1961  France Team award France West South-West
1962  Belgium Eddy Pauwels Wiel's–Groene Leeuw
1963  Belgium Rik Van Looy G.B.C.–Gramaglia
1964  France Henry Anglade Pelforth–Sauvage–Lejeune
1965  Italy Felice Gimondi Salvarani
1966  West Germany Rudi Altig Molteni
1967  France Désiré Letort France
1968  France Roger Pingeon France A
1969  Belgium Eddy Merckx Faema
1970  Belgium Eddy Merckx Faemino–Faema
1971  Spain Luis Ocaña Bic
1972  France Cyrille Guimard Gan–Mercier–Hutchinson
1973  Spain Luis Ocaña Bic
1974  Belgium Eddy Merckx Molteni
1975  Belgium Eddy Merckx Molteni–RYC
1976  France Raymond Delisle Peugeot–Esso–Michelin
1977  Netherlands Gerrie Knetemann TI–Raleigh
1978  Belgium Paul Wellens TI–Raleigh–McGregor
1979  Netherlands Hennie Kuiper TI–Raleigh–McGregor
1980  France Christian Levavasseur Miko–Mercier–Vivagel
1981  France Bernard Hinault Renault–Elf–Gitane
1982  France Régis Clère COOP–Mercier–Mavic
1983   Switzerland Serge Demierre Cilo–Aufina
1984  France Bernard Hinault La Vie Claire
1985  Netherlands Maarten Ducrot Lotto
1986  France Bernard Hinault La Vie Claire
1987  France Régis Clère Teka
1988  France Jérôme Simon Z–Peugeot
1989  France Laurent Fignon Super U–Raleigh–Fiat
1990  Spain Eduardo Chozas ONCE
1991  Italy Claudio Chiappucci Carrera Jeans–Tassoni
1992  Italy Claudio Chiappucci Carrera Jeans–Vagabond
1993  Italy Massimo Ghirotto ZG Mobili
1994  Italy Eros Poli Mercatone Uno–Medeghini
1995  Colombia Hernán Buenahora Kelme–Sureña
1996  France Richard Virenque Festina–Lotus
1997  France Richard Virenque Festina–Lotus
1998  France Jacky Durand Casino–Ag2r
1999  France Jacky Durand Lotto–Mobistar
2000  Netherlands Erik Dekker Rabobank
2001  France Laurent Jalabert CSC–Tiscali
2002  France Laurent Jalabert CSC–Tiscali
2003  Kazakhstan Alexander Vinokourov Team Telekom
2004  France Richard Virenque Quick-Step–Davitamon
2005  Spain Óscar Pereiro Phonak
2006  Spain David de la Fuente Saunier Duval–Prodir
2007  Spain Amets Txurruka Euskaltel–Euskadi
2008  France Sylvain Chavanel Cofidis
2009  Italy Franco Pellizotti[n 1] Liquigas
2010  France Sylvain Chavanel Quick-Step
2011  France Jérémy Roy FDJ
2012  Denmark Chris Anker Sørensen Saxo Bank–Tinkoff Bank
2013  France Christophe Riblon Ag2r–La Mondiale
2014  Italy Alessandro De Marchi Cannondale
2015  France Romain Bardet AG2R La Mondiale
2016  Slovakia Peter Sagan Tinkoff
2017  France Warren Barguil Team Sunweb
2018  Ireland Dan Martin UAE Team Emirates
2019  France Julian Alaphilippe Deceuninck–Quick-Step
2020   Switzerland Marc Hirschi Team Sunweb