|Jean-Christophe PÉRAUD||Romain BARDET||Christophe RIBLON||Jan BAKELANTS||Johan VAN SUMMEREN||Mikael CHEREL||Alexis VUILLERMOZ||Ben GASTAUER||Damien GAUDIN|
At the beginning of 2012, Vincent Lavenu celebrated twenty uninterrupted years of competition for his professional team, and this wonderful story is set to continue! The oldest of the French teams has been sponsored by three main partners: Chazal, Casino and Ag2r. It boasts twenty-one participations in the Tour de France. An ever present since 1997, it has experienced varying fortunes, from the disgrace of its leaders (Rodolfo Massi in 1998 and Francisco Mancebo in 2006) to the podium finish by Jean-Christophe Péraud, the runner-up in 2014, including Rinaldo Nocentini's eight day adventure in the Yellow Jersey, in 2009.
Founded and based since its beginnings in Chambery, the team from Savoy has shone thanks to its 'regional products', whether natives of the Rhône-Alpes region like Sylvain Calzati, a stage winner in Lorient in 2006, and Cyril Dessel, who wore the Yellow Jersey and finished 6th in the general standings that same year. Otherwise, it draws its strength from riders trained in the region, such as Estonian Jaan Kirsipuu, a loyal servant to Lavenu from 1992 to 2004, a four times stage winner and wearer of the Yellow Jersey for six days in 1999, and Christophe Riblon from Picardy, who started out as a track cyclist and won two mountain stages in 2010 and 2013, a year in which his devotion to the cause won him the title of overall most combative rider on the Tour de France.
Ag2r-La Mondiale won the team classification in 2014 (as well as on the Giro) and is reaping the benefits of its training policy, with the emergence of Romain Bardet, the best French rider on Le Tour 2013 (15th) and sixth in the general classification in 2014, after having worn the white jersey. He embodies the success of the training centre in Chambery where the riders combine sport and studies.
Stage victories: 13
- 1998: Jacky Durand at Montauban and Rodolfo Massi at Luchon
- 1999: Jaan Kirsipuu at Challans
- 2000: Christophe Agnolutto at Limoges
- 2001: Jaan Kirsipuu at Strasbourg
- 2002: Jaan Kirsipuu at Rouen
- 2004: Jaan Kirsipuu at Charleroi and Jean-Patrick Nazon at Wasquehal
- 2006: Sylvain Calzati at Lorient
- 2008: Vladimir Efimkin at Bagnères-de-Bigorre and Cyril Dessel at Jausiers
- 2010: Christophe Riblon at Ax-3 Domaines
- 2013: Christophe Riblon at Alpe d'Huez
Victories in secondary classifications: 4
- 1998: Jacky Durand (most combative rider)
- 1999: Benoît Salmon (best young rider)
- 2013: Christophe Riblon (most combative rider)
- 2014: team classification
Yellow Jerseys: 16
- 1998: Bo Hamburger, one day
- 1999: Jaan Kirsipuu, six days
- 2006: Cyril Dessel, one day
- 2009: Rinaldo Nocentini, eight days
21: the number of participations in the Tour de France by Vincent Lavenu's team, a French record for currently active cycling teams.
5th July 1999: Jaan Kirsipuu, a loyal rider from the very beginnings of Vincent Lavenu's cycling teams, becomes the first Estonian to wear the Yellow Jersey.
9th July 2006: on the day of the football World Cup final between France and Italy, Sylvain Calzati, a Frenchman of Italian origin, wins the stage at Lorient.
27th July 2014: Jean-Christophe Péraud, silver medallist in mountain biking at the Olympic Games in 2008, climbs on to the podium at the age of 37 years as runner-up to Vincenzo Nibali, then finds himself back there again with all his team-mates to celebrate winning the team classification.