Jean Robic

by Russ on May 13, 2014

Jean Robic
Business Card
Reviewed by

on May 13, 2014
A business card features a photo of a famous Tour de France winner to attract patrons to his bar and restaurant. There is not much detail about the venue itself, only the invitation to experience the ambiance of a champion bicyclist's watering hole.

This looks to be a signed copy of M Robic’s business card. Could it be that he is a famous cyclist, perhaps even a Tour de France winner?

Let’s begin by observing this somewhat out-of-focus white, black and gray-scale card. The top printed line, in a semi-script, reads “Friends, athletes,” and goes on to say in a welcome series of fonts, “Jean Robic is waiting for you at his bar-restaurant.”

Below this is the address, a brief one line of directions, followed by the city–Paris–the arrondissement or section of the city–the 14th–and what we assume is the phone number. Lastly are some letters and numbers of which we are unfamiliar.

Filling the entire third of the space on the right, is a photo presumably of Jean himself, perhaps with a winner’s pennant. There is a great deal of text–wholly unreadable unfortunately–in the lower left hand corner.

The fun part of this card, aside from his charming invitation to join him at his bar-restaurant (which seems nameless, by the way), is the note in red ink and M Robic’s signature. He just has to have been a famous fellow. You can get your fun card with a Moo promo code and get your image out in public with the professionalism of a winner.

And so he is! He was born in 1921, was a professional cyclist from 1943 to 1961 and he did indeed win the Tour de France in 1947. He was an unusually small man and used the technique (illegal today we suspect) of gathering water bottles filled with lead or mercury on his descents for increasing the assistance that gravity would offer.

No one thought he would be a successful cyclist. He practiced during World War II and turned professional in 1943. During that year, he fell, fractured his skull but continued the race. Thereafter he wore a leather helmet and was known, among other nicknames, as tĂȘte de cuir, or leather head.

When the war ended and the Tour de France was restarted, he was selected for a regional team to compete in the race. In a circuit worthy of a sports style soap opera, he won the grueling race, not by finishing in the shortest amount of time, but by picking up time bonuses in the Pyrenees. Go to Wikipedia, where we did our research, to read all the truly exciting details.

This business card reads like an invitation to come meet the leather-head winner of the 1947 Tour de France. Sadly, M Robic passed away in 1980, after an ignominious last few years, so the time is past to belly up to the bar and share a drink with him.

Jean Robic

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