Italian cycling great Felice Gimondi, one of only seven riders to have won all three Grand Tours, has died at the age of 76 after suffering a heart attack while swimming in Sicily on Friday.
Gimondi won the 1965 Tour de France in his first season as a professional, aged 22. He won the Giro d'Italia two years later and the Vuelta a Espana in 1968.
"A great champion who made our sport more human has left us, a great man," the Italian cycling federation said in a statement.
Gimondi went on to win five Grand Tours in total, claiming further Giro titles in 1969 and 1976. He retired in 1978.
He also won 14 Grand Tour stages including seven at the Tour, six at the Giro and one at the Vuelta.
As well as his Grand Tour triumphs, he was a consistent classics rider. He won both the Paris-Roubaix and Giro di Lombardia in 1966, before a second Lombardia title in 1973. Victory at Milan-San Remo followed a year later.
“I had only one idol in my life: Felice Gimondi,” Italian national coach Davide Cassani said in reaction to Gimondi's death. “Whenever I saw him it was an emotion because when you fall in love with a champion it is for life. You were a great Felice.”
Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault, Alberto Contador, Vincenzo Nibali and Chris Froome are the other six riders to have won all three Grand Tours.