Henri Van Lerberghe

Henri Van Lerberghe
Personal information
Full name Henri Van Lerberghe
Nickname Den Doodrijder van Lichtervelde
Born (1891-01-29)29 January 1891
Lichtervelde, Belgium
Died 10 April 1966(1966-04-10) (aged 75)
Lichtervelde, Belgium
Team information
Discipline Road
Role Rider
Major wins
Tour of Flanders (1919)
One stage Tour de France

Henri Van Lerberghe (sometimes Van Leerberghe) (Lichtervelde, 29 January 1891 – Lichtervelde, 10 April 1966) was a Belgian professional road bicycle racer. In 1919, he won the third edition of the Tour of Flanders.

Van Lerberghe was nicknamed "The deathrider from Lichtervelde" (Dutch: Den Doodrijder Van Lichtervelde), because at the start of most races he would tell his opponents he would ride them to death. Van Lerberghe attacked early in the race, which made him popular amongst cycling fans, but this cost him a lot of energy, and he rarely was able to compete in the end of the race.[1]

In the 1913 Tour de France, Van Lerberghe started in the isolated cyclists' category, which meant that he was not part of a team, but rode as an individual.[2] In the fifth stage, the individual cyclists left fifteen minutes later than the cyclists in teams, but because the cyclists in teams were slow, Van Lerberghe was able to reach them, and beat them to win the stage.

During the 1919 Ronde Van Vlaanderen, Van Lerberghe attacked with 120 km to go against the wind, and it looked like one of his chanceless efforts. He saw a helper with a bag of food for Marcel Buysse, and after he convinced the helper that Buysse was already out of the race, Van Lerberghe took the food. Later, he had to stop because a train had stopped at a crossing. Van Lerberghe did not wait for the train to leave, but entered the train with his bicycle and left at the other side. He reached the finish with a margin of 14 minutes, the largest margin in the history of the Tour of Flanders.[1]

Major results


1913 Tour de France:
Winner stage 5
Tour of Flanders


  1. 1 2 Haan, Rob de (31 March 2010). "'Ik zal jullie doodrijden!'". www.nusport.nl (in Dutch). Sanoma Uitgevers. Retrieved 10 May 2010.
  2. "11ème Tour de France 1913" (in French). Memoire du cyclisme. Archived from the original on 2009-05-14. Retrieved 10 May 2010.
  3. Henri Van Lerberghe profile at Cycling Archives

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