2024 Tour de France

2024 Tour de France Jersey Color Guide

2024 Tour de France Jersey Color Guide

The 2024 edition of the Tour de France will take place from June 29-July 21, kicking off in Florence, Italy. Here’s what each TDF color jersey means.

Jun 21, 2024 by Matt Cannizzaro
How the Tour Classification Works

Along with a field of the world’s best cyclists and the most picturesque backdrops in sports, perhaps the most recognizable feature of the Tour de France is the array of colorful jerseys worn during the 21 stages of competition. 

Sure, the competitors will wear their team/sponsor jerseys on most days, but every stage also is an opportunity to work toward earning one of the four special jerseys awarded for success at the prestigious Tour de France, which first was held in 1903.

The 111th edition of the race in 2024 will be no different, with up to 176 riders (representing 22 teams of eight) hitting the starting line with their sights set on the yellow (maillot jaune), green (maillot vert), red polka dots (maillot à pois rouges) and white (maillot blanc) jerseys.

But what do all these jerseys mean during the Tour de France? It’s definitely more than just a fashion statement, it’s a cycling statement. For some, it could be a career-defining statement.

As the race rolls through a variety of terrains and challenges – hills, mountains, gravel, cobblestone, sprints, climbs and more – the Tour de France-specific jerseys help the top performers stand out from the rest of their teammates and the crowd in general.

In 1969, five-time Tour de France champion Eddy Merckx became the only rider in history to claim the yellow, green and polka dot jersey in the same year.

Here is what those four jersey colors mean:

Tour de France Yellow Jersey Meaning 

Maillot Jaune 

The yellow jersey is the ultimate prize and the most recognizable aspect of the Tour de France. 

A tradition that began in 1919 sees the race’s overall leader (top of the General Classification) wear the yellow jersey, with the ultimate goal being to be the bearer of the yellow jersey following the final stage.

Those in contention for this coveted prize, which is based on total time across the stages and varying terrain (finishing time on each stage added together), are the most well-rounded of the competitors. 

The wearer of the yellow jersey can change frequently during the 21 stages - or not at all.

In 1961, five-time Tour de France champion Jacques Anquetil claimed the yellow jersey on the opening stage and never relinquished it. 

Yellow Jersey History At The Tour de France

The color yellow was chosen as a way to easily identify the race leader at the Tour de France, and while the design of the jersey has changed in the century since it was introduced, the color has remained consistent. 

French cyclist Eugène Christophe was the first rider awarded the yellow jersey, which happened at the 1919 Tour de France, replacing an armband previously worn by the leader. The 1919 event was the first edition after a four-year hiatus due to World War I.

Prior to this, the Tour de France did not have a jersey system in place. 

Merckx, one of four five-time Tour de France winners, holds the record for most yellow jerseys (96). 

Here are the riders who have worn the yellow jersey the most throughout their careers:

  • Eddy Merckx – 96
  • Bernard Hinault – 75
  • Miguel Indurain – 60
  • Chris Froome – 59
  • Jacques Anquetil – 50

*Not including half stages.

Here are the winners of the yellow jersey for the past five years:

  • 2023 – Jonas Vingegaard, Denmark
  • 2022 – Jonas Vingegaard, Denmark
  • 2021– Tadej Pogačar, Slovenia
  • 2020 – Tadej Pogačar, Slovenia
  • 2019 – Egan Bernal, Colombia

Tour de France Green Jersey Meaning

Maillot Verde 

The green jersey is referred to as the “sprinters jersey,” though it is held – and eventually won – by the rider with the most points.

Much like the yellow jersey is awarded to the overall leader after each stage, the green jersey falls on the shoulders of the rider who leads the points race.

How is that different? What does that mean?

Well, points are awarded to the first 15 riders to complete each stage of the Tour de France, with the type of terrain determining just how many points. 

Since more points are offered on flatter stages, as a way to incentivize the sprinters, the green jersey has become synonymous with the sprinters. In fact, additional points are up for grabs on some stages via intermediate sprints, or sprints that take place within the stage.

The 2024 Tour de France will feature four summit finishes, three additional mountain days, four hilly stages and eight stages that are expected to feature sprint finishes. There also will be two individual time trials in 2024.

Should it work out that the same rider is leading the general classification and the points race, the green jersey will be worn by the rider who is second in points.

Green Jersey History At The Tour de France

The green jersey also is a symbol of versatility and consistency across the many tumultuous stages of the Tour de France. It first was awarded in 1953 as part of the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the race.

Swiss rider Fritz Schär was the first rider to earn the jersey, while Slovakian Peter Sagan holds the record with seven green jerseys in his career. 

Here are the winners of the green jersey for the past five years:

  • 2023 – Jasper Philipsen, Belgium
  • 2022 – Wout van Aert, Belgium
  • 2021– Mark Cavendish, Great Britain
  • 2020 – Sam Bennett, Ireland
  • 2019 – Peter Sagan, Slovakia

Tour de France Polka Dot Jersey Meaning

Maillot à Pois Rouges

This white and red polka dot jersey is earned by the “King of the Mountains” or the leader of the Mountains Classification at the Tour de France. Simply, the best climber.

What does that mean?

Each stage of the Tour de France is a different distance and type of terrain – flat, hilly, mountainous – and points are awarded to the riders who are the first to reach the mountain summits.

The climbs are ranked from Category 1 (most challenging) to Category 4 (least challenging), and points are awarded based on the difficulty. 

This may be a secondary competition within the ultimate race in cycling, but the polka dot jersey remains a coveted prize, too.

Polka Dot Jersey History At The Tour de France

The Tour de France introduced the King of the Mountains Classification in 1933, though the polka dot jersey didn’t make its debut until 1975 as a way to celebrate the courageous riders who push beyond their limits.

Prior to 1933, the local newspaper, which helped organize the event, selected the best climber. 

Again, if the rider who earns the polka dot jersey also claims the yellow or green jersey, it will be worn by the next eligible competitor in the standings.

The first rider to earn the green jersey in 1975 was Joop Zoetemelk, though it was Lucien Van Impe who took it home at the conclusion of the race.

Van Impe went on to win it six times, while Richard Virenque now holds the record with seven. 

Here are the winners of the polka dot jersey for the past five years. From 2020-2022 the winners of the polka dot jersey also won the Tour de France:

  • 2023 – Giulio Ciccone, Italy
  • 2022 – Jonas Vingegaard, Denmark
  • 2021– Tadej Pogačar, Slovenia
  • 2020 – Tadej Pogačar, Slovenia
  • 2019 – Romain Bardet, France

Tour de France White Jersey Meaning

Maillot Blanc

For almost 50 years, the white jersey at the Tour de France has been a symbol of youth and the future of the prestigious event. It is earned by the “best young rider” or “leader in waiting.”

But what does that mean?

The white jersey is awarded to the highest rider in the standings who is under the age of 26. It can exchange hands each day, or not at all, and ultimately is won by the highest finisher under age 26.

The purpose of this jersey is to celebrate the spirit young riders bring to the Tour de France.

White Jersey History At The Tour de France

This color was introduced in 1968 to identify the leader of the combined classification, which was based on overall standing, points and mountain standings, but it wasn’t until 1975 that it began to serve its current purpose. 

Italy’s Francesco Moser was the first rider to be awarded the white jersey under the new classification. For many young riders, earning a white jersey brings the same feelings and meaning as the yellow jersey. 

Though part of the coveted quartet of jerseys at the Tour de France, the requirements for how to earn the white jersey have changed many times since its introduction. 

Two-time Tour de France champion Tadej Pogačar has dominated the youth classification with four consecutive wins (2020-2023), while he also claimed the yellow jersey in 2020 and 2021.

White jersey winners of the last five years: 

  • 2023 – Tadej Pogačar
  • 2022 – Tadej Pogačar
  • 2021 – Tadej Pogačar
  • 2020 – Tadej Pogačar
  • 2019 – Egan Bernal 

Tour de France Teams For 2024

There will be 22 teams and up to 176 competitors in this year’s Tour de France:


  • Decathlon AG2R La Mondiale Team
  • Alpecin - Deceuninck
  • Arkéa - B&B Hotels
  • Astana Qazaqstan Team
  • Bahrain - Victorious
  • BORA - hansgrohe
  • Cofidis
  • EF Education - EasyPost
  • Groupama - FDJ
  • INEOS Grenadiers
  • Intermarché - Wanty
  • Team Visma | Lease a Bike
  • Lidl - Trek
  • Movistar Team
  • Soudal Quick-Step
  • Team dsm-firmenich PostNL
  • Team Jayco AlUla
  • UAE Team Emirates
  • Israel - Premier Tech
  • Lotto Dstny
  • Uno-X Mobility
  • TotalEnergies

When Does The Tour de France 2024 Start?

The Tour de France is a 21-stage event.

The 2024 edition will begin in Florence, Italy, on June 29 and conclude in Nice, France, on July 21. 

Every day, the cyclists start together to complete the stage of a race. Every stage varies in distance and physical demand. 

What Is The Schedule For The Tour de France 2024?

Here is the complete schedule for the 2024 Tour de France

How To Watch The Tour de France 2024 In The United States 

A live broadcast of the 2024 Tour de France will be available on Peacock for those watching from the United States. 

Peacock is the exclusive home of the event in the United States through 2029, with start-to-finish coverage of every stage, though select stages also will air on NBC.

How To Watch The Tour de France 2024 In Canada 

FloBikes will provide a live broadcast for Canadian audiences.

Viewers in Canada will be able to watch all 21 stages of the 2024 Tour de France live on FloBikes and the FloSports app.

FloBikes also will provide updates, highlights and behind-the-scenes coverage throughout the entire event for all Flo subscribers. 

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