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Jean Dotto

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Happy birthday to Jean Dotto, who was born on this day in 1928, and died on February 20, 2000.

Dotto was the first French rider to win the Vuelta a Espana, after winning the Spanish Grand Tour in 1955 ahead of Antonio Jimenez of Spain and Raphael Geminiani of France.

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Dotto was of Italian descent, but later adopted French citizenship in 1937.

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Known for his excellent climbing ability, Dotto won his first race as a semi-professional in 1948 – a race up Mont Ventoux.

Later that year, he the won Marseille-Toulon-Marseille, followed by the climb of La Turbie, near Nice in 1950.

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Dotto turned professional in 1951 with the France-Sport-Dunlop team, and won five races that year, including three hill climbs.

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Dotto rode professionally until 1963, winning 35 races, which included such notable victories as the Dauphiné-Libéré twice and stage 19 of the 1954 Tour de France.

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The town of Cabasse, France named its center square “Le Vigneron de Cabasse” in honor of Dotto, who’s father was a vinter who grew grapes there.

Joyeux anniversaire Jean! 

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