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Tour de France author appearing at Danville bookstore

Former Washington Post journalist de Visé chronicled champion LeMond in ‘The Comeback’

Rakestraw Books in downtown Danville is set to host a guest appearance Wednesday by Daniel de Visé, a former Washington Post journalist and author of “The Comeback,” the real-life story about a young American cyclist’s journey to the Tour de France.

Greg LeMond became a professional cyclist in his mid-teens and had dreamed of the Tour de France since early childhood. After defeating all of his rivals and becoming the cycling champion in the United States, LeMond shocked Europe with a win in the Tour de France in 1986.

Not soon after, LeMond was critically injured when he was accidentally shot during a hunting trip on his uncle’s California ranch. LeMond refused to allow the incident to end his career and kept pushing forward, enduring endless mockery in his seemingly hopeless task of regaining his cycling career.

It took a total of two years for LeMond to get back into shape to compete as a professional. His 1989 comeback in the Tour de France is remembered as one of the most remarkable accomplishments in cycling history with a miraculous eight-second margin over his second-place French competitor. LeMond would continue to crush records and took the top title once again in the 1990 Tour.

In subsequent years, LeMond began to fall behind and never regained his former title or fame -- being lost in the shadow of Lance Armstrong.

De Visé’s “The Comeback” chronicles the years-long effort by LeMond and his supporters to retake his rightful place as the legitimate American champion of the Tour de France in the wake of the Armstrong doping and coverup scandal that rocked the nation.

The book talk will commence at 7 p.m. Wednesday. To learn more about the author, visit www.danieldevise.com.

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