Historic Overview Marino Lejarreta Arrizabalaga


Overall Rank45
Date of birth14-May-1957 - Berriz (Pais Vasco)
ContemporiesView Contemporary Ranking


Marino Lejarreta Arrizabalaga

Marino Lejarreta Arrizabalaga (born 14 May 1957 in Berriz, Biscay) is a retired Spanish professional road racing cyclist. His biggest victory was capturing the 1982 Vuelta a España, a Grand Tour stage race, and he is the inaugural and record three-time winner of the Clásica de San Sebastián (1981, 1982, 1987), which is now considered a one-day classic. In 1989, Lejarreta captured the Volta a Catalunya repeating one of his first professional wins in 1980 at the same event.

Lejarreta rode very well in the 1982 Vuelta, but initially finished 2nd to Ángel Arroyo while coming in just eighteen seconds ahead of Michel Pollentier. Following the race however, Pino and several other riders failed doping controls in one of the biggest scandals in Vuelta history making the young Basque rider the de facto winner of the race. It was a bittersweet victory as he was not actually the victor riding into Madrid. For the 1983 Vuelta a España he would be up against Bernard Hinault, who had his teammates Laurent Fignon and Greg LeMond, as well as other strong riders including Hennie Kuiper and the Spanish riders of Pino, Alberto Fernández and a young Pedro Delgado who was riding in his second Vuelta. The leaders Jersey changed hands numerous times and Lejarreta held it early while also winning a mountain time trial, but suffered a crash and lost it. During the Lagos de Covadonga stage he escaped from the group of favorites made up of Fernandez, Pino, Hinault, Kuiper and others and soloed to victory, but it was not enough to reclaim the lead. In the end he finished just 1:12 behind Hinault to stand on the podium in 2nd.

Later in his career he would win his only Tour de France stage in a very unusual manner. During the 1990 edition he found himself among the group of favorites as Delgado, Breukink and LeMond were battling the surprising Claudio Chiappucci for the Yellow Jersey. During stage 14 he attacked off the front of the favorites group in an effort to chase down the final few breakaway riders and go for the stage win. When he crossed the finish line ahead of the favorites he did not throw his arms up to celebrate because he did not think he caught the final breakaway rider. With the available technology not giving instant times, results and standings as it does today, it was not as easy to know what was going on from within the race and Lejarreta didn't find out until he came to a stop and was told by his team that he had won the stage.

He would win stages in all three Grand Tours and finish in the top 10 fifteen times: The Giro seven times, the Tour three times and the Vuelta five times including three podium places and a win in 1982.

Until 2015, Lejarreta was the only person in history to complete all three Grand Tours in a single year four times in a career; he did the triple in 1987, 1989, 1990 and 1991. Adam Hansen is the only rider to complete all three Grand Tours in a season more times than Lejarreta, but Hansen was never a GC Contender as Lejarreta was. In fact during the four seasons he completed all three Grand Tours he placed in the Top 10 in eight out of twelve of them.

source - Wikipedia


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Major Victories

Vuelta a España 1982
Clasica San Sebastian 1981, 1982, 1987
Volta Ciclista a Catalunya 1980, 1989
Klasika Primavera de Amorebieta 1989
Giro dell'Appennino 1983
Circuito de Getxo 1981
Euskal Bizikleta 1987
Vuelta a Galicia 1988
Tour de France - stages 1990 (1)
Giro d'Italia - stages 1984 (1), 1991 (1)
Vuelta a España - stages 1982 (1), 1983 (3), 1986 (1)
Route du Sud - stages 1981 (1)
More results


Marino Lejarreta Arrizabalaga - Scores by Season

Year Team Score Rank
1. 1978 Individual 12 575
2. 1979 Novostil - Helios 106 300
3. 1980 Teka 1330 26
4. 1981 Teka - Campagnolo 1644 17
5. 1982 Teka 1933 11
6. 1983 Alfa Lum - Olmo 2100 8
7. 1984 Alfa Lum - Olmo 1141 28
8. 1985 Alpilatte - Olmo - Cierre 1276 27
9. 1986 Seat - Orbea 1408 23
10. 1987 Caja Rural - Orbea 2296 5
11. 1988 Caja Rural - Orbea 1518 20
12. 1989 Paternina 2198 6
13. 1990 O.N.C.E. 2519 3
14. 1991 O.N.C.E. 2113 6
15. 1992 O.N.C.E. 59 486
Overall: 21653 45