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Greg LeMond

Greg LeMond (b. June 26, 1961 in Lakewood, California) became the first non-European cyclist to win the Tour de France in 1986.

LeMond began racing professionally in 1982. He gave up a likely Tour de France win in 1985 because the managers of his team had picked Bernard Hinault as team captain.

Nearly dying from shotgun wounds suffered in a turkey hunting accident in the fall of 1986 (he lost a kidney and suffered a collapsed lung), he was forced to miss the following two Tours while he recovered and also had surgery for tendinitis in his leg and appendicitis. Three years later, with 37 shotgun pellets remaining in his body (including some in the lining of his heart), LeMond was hoping only to finish in the top 20, yet he took a second yellow jersey in 1989 and went on to a third win in 1990. In his 1989 win, he defeated French rival Laurent Fignon in the final stage, an individual time trial, by 58 seconds to give him a final victory margin of 8 seconds--the closest in the Tour's history.

LeMond is one of the few cyclists to win the race without winning a single stage. LeMond developed mitochondrial myopathy and retired from professional cycling in December 1994.