He was one of the great figures in the history of the Tour de France: Louison Bobet, who won the gruelling race in three consecutive years from 1953 to 1955.
And now, one of the Aberdeen students who was taught by Mr Bobet’s brother, Jean, has shared the fascinating story of how the French brothers made Tour history.
Bill Cooper, who is now 83, was a teenage student at Robert Gordon’s College when he first rubbed shoulders with Jean and has followed his former teacher’s life ever since.
Indeed, although his old master turns 90 this year, Mr Cooper believes that Jean should be invited to the north-east in advance of the Granite City staging part of the Tour of Britain in the summer.
He said: “I knew Jean through our French classes at RGC long, long ago in the early 1950s, but I remember being introduced to a slim young man and being told: ‘This is Monsieur Bobet who is going to improve your spoken French.
“Well, thereafter, in a mixture of English and French, we were taken on a wonderful journey following the ups and downs of the Tour.
“There was little, if any, TV coverage of the race and we were amazed by its three-week length and the distances covered and, above all, by the height of the formidable mountain passes.
“Jean told us of his brother’s dream that he would one day win the Tour and I never forgot it. A few months later, he left Aberdeen to help his brother and, of course, in the next few years, Louison enjoyed a remarkable amount of success.
“They worked closely together and it was a fantastic feat for Louison to win the Tour three years in a row.
“I’ve never forgotten it and it would be wonderful if Jean could return to Aberdeen later this year. His story is very much worth telling.”
Mr Cooper and his family themselves become prolific cyclists and he is excited about the sport’s recent surge in popularity in Scotland.
He recalled: “We did the things that most boys in my part of the city did. We cycled alone or in small groups to Ellon and Collieston as well as up Deeside and to Stonehaven. And quite often to school as well.
“The real cyclists in my family were my wife Gillian and our son David. Both were members of the Cyclists Touring Club and regularly covered up to 105 miles on week-end runs including carrying their bikes over Mt Keen as part of a round trip on the south side of the River Dee.
“As a family we have long enjoyed TV coverage of the Tour de France and in recent years of the Italian Giro and the Spanish Vueta as well and now of the Tour of Britain too. A whole summer of cycling viewing.
“So I really hope we shall see Jean Bobet in Aberdeen later this year. I am sure he would receive a warm welcome.”
Aberdeen City Council and Aberdeenshire Council have agreed a two-year deal to host the Tour of Britain, beginning with the final stage of the 2020 race on September 13.
Not only will this mark the first time the Tour of Britain has visited the region, it will also be the furthest point north the race has ever reached.
Full details of the route have yet to be revealed, but the winner will be crowned in Aberdeen, following a day of racing in the stunning Aberdeenshire countryside.