Goddet's former colleague at L'Auto, Jean Leulliot, didn't have the same reluctance. Leulliot, who had been manager of the French team that won the Tour in 1937, had become head of sport at La France Socialiste. Despite its name, it was a right-wing paper that sympathised with the Germans. Leulliot assembled 69 riders for a race, the Circuit de France, which ran from 28 September to 4 October 1942. Over six stages and 1,650km, it want from Paris to Paris via Le Mans, Poitiers, Limoges, Clermont-Ferrand, St-Étienne, Lyon and Dijon..
One of the riders, Émile Idée, told the writer and cyclist Jean Bobet that he had been threatened with the Gestapo if he didn't take part. Bobet said: "I asked him to repeat it to see if I had understood. I was stunned [dans la tête ça fait tilt]!
L'Auto organised a readers' poll in 1943 to name the perfect team for a Tour de France, were one to be run. More than 10,000 took part. In 1940 it ran what it called the Grand Prix du Tour de France, the paper's assessment of the greatest riders by their placings in single-day races.
Emile Besson, communist sports writer and a member of the Resistance from 1943 when he was 17, called L'Équipe's victory political. Besson, who was a member of the national study into French sport under the Occupation, set up by the sports minister, Marie-George Buffet, said:
It was a bit much to have given them the right to run the Tour again after all that [referring to L'Auto's pro-German attitude and closure]. Goddet had the keys to the Velodrome d'Hiver when [the Germans wanted it] in the round-up of Jews in July 1942. After the Liberation, the battle between Left and Right had the Tour as one of its prizes.
Goddet had to defend his wartime behaviour at an inquiry in Algiers. He pointed to the way he had allowed Resistance workers to print anti-German tracts at his newspaper and called Philippe Amaury in his defence. Amaury had a blameless record in the Resistance. He was also a right-wing businessman, his ideals close to Goddet's. It was with Amaury and his paper, Le Parisien Libéré, that Goddet ran La Course du Tour de France. It was Amaury's reputation that landed Goddet the Tour. That, says Besson, because the rival candidate was two magazines with a communist background and President Charles de Gaulle was determined to limit communist influence.
Amaury eventually took control of both the paper and the Tour de France.
Jean Leulliot was tried for his role in organising races under German patronage but he was cleared after fellow journalists, including Goddet, spoke in his favour.
|1||Paris - Le Mans||203||Guy Lapébie|
|2||Le Mans - Poitiers||226||Frans Bonduel|
|3A||Poitiers - Limoges||103||Georges Guillier|
|3B||Limoges - Clermont-Ferrand||163||Louis Caput|
|4||Clermont-Ferrand - Saint Etienne||203||François Neuville|
|5A||Saint Etienne - Lyon||56||Genial-Lucifer (team time trial)|
|5B||Lyon - Dijon||203||Albert Goutal|
|6||Dijon - Paris||358||Raymond Louviot|
|1||François Neuville|| 45h 32' 09"|
|2||Louis Thiétard||5' 23"|
|3||Louis Caput||5' 31"|
|4||Frans Bonduel||10' 26"|
|5||Léon Level||10' 54"|
|6||Albertin Disseaux||17' 10"|
|7||Raymond Louviot||19' 50"|
|8||Jean-Marie Goasmat||28' 16"|
|9||Emile Idée||34' 05"|
|10||Georges Guillier||44' 51"|
|1||Bordeaux - Pau||221||Elio Bertocchi||Elio Bertocchi|
|2||Pau - Toulouse||300||Giulio Bresci||Giulio Bresci|
|3||Toulouse - Montpellier||249||Raymond Louviot||Giulio Bresci|
|4||Montpellier - Gap||274||Giulio Bresci||Giulio Bresci|
|5||Gap - Grenoble||277||Apo Lazarides||Giulio Bresci|
|1||Giulio Bresci||45h 32' 09"|
|2||Ezio Bertocchi||4' 08"|
|3||Edouard Fachleitner||11' 24"|
|4||Pierre Cogan||14' 14"|
|5||Apo Lazarides||26' 50"|
|6||Giuseppe Tacca||30' 48"|
|7||Augusto Introzzi||44' 13"|
|8||Pierre Brambilla||58' 42"|
|9||Maurice de Muer||1h 02' 29"|
|10||Petrus Van Verre||1h 10' 13"|
|1||Monaco - Digne||185||Aldo Baito||Aldo Baito|
|2||Digne - Briançon||219||René Vietto||René Vietto|
|3||Briançon - Aix-les-Bains||263||Jean Robic||Jean Robic|
|4||Aix-les-Bains - Dijon||294||Adolfo Leoni||Apo Lazarides|
|5||Dijon - Paris||355||Adolfo Leoni||Apo Lazarides|
|1||Apo Lazarides||44h 31' 42"|
|2||René Vietto||37' 59"|
|3||Jean Robic||40' 25"|
|4||Lucien Teisseire||49' 58"|
|5||Emile Rol||52' 07"|
|6||Aldo Baito||54' 35"|
|7||Pierre Brambilla||57' 28"|
|8||Diego Marabelli||1h 00' 11"|
|9||Salvatore Crippa||1h 10' 59"|
|10||Auguste Mallet||1h 23' 53"|