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Hennie Kuiper
Personal information
Full name Hennie Kuiper
Date of birth February 3, 1949 (1949-02-03) (age 60)
Country  Netherlands
Team information
Current team Retired
Discipline Road
Role Rider
Major wins
Golden medal 1972 Olympic Games
1975 World Champion
Paris-Roubaix (1983)
Infobox last updated on:
July 16, 2008

Hennie Kuiper (born 3 February 1949) is a Dutch former professional cyclist who is ranked in the top 50 greatest riders in the history of the sport. His career includes a gold medal in the Olympic road race at Munich in 1972, becoming world professional road race champion in 1975, as well as winning four of the five “Monument” classics. He rode the Tour de France 12 times, finishing second twice and winning the stage to Alpe d'Huez on two occasions. Kuiper, Ercole Baldini and Paolo Bettini are the only riders to have won both the Olympic road race and the world professional road race.



Kuiper was born at Denekamp, in Overijssel province. His serious introduction to the bicycle was to and from school in Enschede. He started participating in junior races from 14 and from 19 to 23 he won 39 times as an amateur. The climax of his amateur career was gold in the Olympic road race in Munich in 1972, riding the final 40km alone. He also won the Tour of Britain (Milk Race) that year.

Professional career

Kuiper turned professional in 1973 with the small German team Haro-Rokado. His career took off in 1975 when he signed for the Dutch team, Frisol, where he got more chances to shine and formed a partnership with José De Cauwer (who worked for Kuiper in races) that lasted until 1980. The 1975 season saw Kuiper become world champion at Yvoir in Belgium, winning a tough race over 260km, with 21 ascents of a two-mile climb.

Kuiper signed for TI-Raleigh in 1976 and finished second in the 1977 Tour de France 48 seconds behind Bernard Thévenet, who later admitted using steroids. Kuiper won the mountain stage at Alpe d’Huez, a feat he repeated in 1978. Kuiper finished fourth in the 1979 Tour and second in 1980 behind Joop Zoetemelk. That second place ended his best years as a stage race rider and in 1981 he moved to DAF Trucks and re-invented himself as a one-day classics rider. 1981 saw him win the Ronde van Vlaanderen and the Giro di Lombardia while in 1983 he won Paris-Roubaix at the 11th attempt. In 1985, at 36, he won Milan-Sanremo. His retirement came on 6 November 1988 at 39 at a small cyclo-cross at Oldenzaal in his home province.

Team manager

After retirement Kuiper managed the small German pro squad Team Stuttgart between 1989 and 1990. In 1991 he became head of the Telekom team. In 1992 he was approached by Jim Ochowicz, manager of the American Motorola team, to become assistant team manager. Kuiper stayed with Motorola for four years. Since 1997 he has worked for the Rabobank team in public relations, as well as coaching the Dutch national team on occasions. He has two sons from his first marriage with Ine Nolten: Patrick Kuiper and Bjorn Kuiper. He lives with his second wife, Marianne, in Lonneker.

Career highlights

Med 1.png Olympic Road Race Champion (Munich)
1st overall Ronde van Drenthe
2nd, Züri-Metzgete
5th, Amstel Gold Race
2nd Paris-Camembert
Arc en ciel.svg 1st UCI Road World Championships Road Race
Netherlands Dutch National Road Race Championship
5th overall and one stage, Vuelta a España
Winner stage 4 Tour de France
1st Overall and one stage, Tour de Suisse
One stage, Vuelta a Espana
2nd overall and stage 17, Tour de France (Alpe d'Huez)
Dutch Sportsman of the year
stage 16, Tour de France (Alpe d’Huez)
2nd Overall, Tour de Romandie
4th overall, Tour de France
3rd, Paris-Roubaix
2nd overall, Tour de France
2nd, Liège-Bastogne-Liège
4th, Paris-Brussels
1st, Ronde van Vlaanderen
1st, Giro di Lombardia
2nd overall, Tour of Holland
1st, Grand Prix de Wallonnie
2nd overall, Tour of Luxembourg
1st, Paris-Roubaix
5th overall, Vuelta a Espana
9th, Paris-Roubaix
10th, Züri-Metzgete
1st, Milan-Sanremo
3rd, Ronde van Vlaanderen
5th, Rund um den Henninger Turm
3rd, Veenendaal-Veenendaal

Major tours

(- : did not finish).

Number 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988
Tour de France 12 11 - 2 - 4 2 30 9 - 56 - 95
Giro d'Italia 4 16 -                   22 44  
Vuelta a España 3 5 6         5      


  • 1973 Haro
  • 1974 Rokado
  • 1975 Frisol
  • 1976-78 TI-Raleigh
  • 1979-80 Peugeot
  • 1981-82 DAF Trucks
  • 1983 Aernoudt
  • 1984 Kwantum Hallen-Yoko
  • 1985 Verandalux
  • 1986 Skala-Skil
  • 1987 Roland-Skala
  • 1988 Sigma-FINA

External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Cees Priem
Dutch National Road Race Champion
Succeeded by
Jan Raas
Preceded by
Jan Raas
Winner of Paris-Roubaix
Succeeded by
Seán Kelly
Preceded by
Piet Kleine
Dutch Sportsman of the Year
Succeeded by
Gerrie Knetemann


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