Google Doodle celebrates Gino Bartali’s 104th Birthday

Google Doodle celebrates Gino Bartali’s 104th Birthday

  • Google is honoring Gino Bartali on what would have marked his 104th birthday
  • Gino was known for winning major bicycle races including the Tour de France
  • He’s often hailed a hero for having hid a Jewish family in his home during WWII
  • Gino also concealed notes in his bike and sent them for Jews during that period

Long before Chris Froome, Vincenzo Nibali, or Alberto Contador, Gino Bartali’s name was synonymous with cycling. The Italian-born athlete won prestigious titles and was hailed a hero for his personal commitment to doing good.

Google is marking what would have been Gino Bartali’s 104th birthday with a special Google Doodle. The image shows the cyclist pedaling along, revealing something important hidden in his handlebars.

That something is a note. Bartali, who won two Tour de France titles and three wins in the Giro d’Italia, was known for concealing notes, photographs and other small items in his handle bars and passing them along for Jewish families in the 1930s and 1940s when they were being discriminated against. For this, he was considered a hero in Italy and beyond.

Google is honoring Italian cyclist Gino Bartali on what would have marked his 104th birthday

After Bartali died in 2000, at the age of 85, it was revealed that he’d done more than hide notes. He’d hidden an entire Jewish family in the basement of his home to keep them safe.

Giacomo Goldenberg, a friend of Bartali’s and a member of the family he hid, said in a documentary directed by Oren Jacoby: ‘He hid us in spite of knowing that the Germans were killing everybody who was hiding Jews.

‘He was risking not only his life but also his family. Gino Bartali saved my life and the life of my family. That’s clear because if he hadn’t hidden us, we had nowhere to go.’

What else do you need to know about Gino Bartali? Check it out.

Who is Gino Bartali?

Gino Bartali was born on July 18, 1914 in Ponte a Ema, Florence, Italy. He was a champion road cyclist and the most well-known Italian cyclist before World War II.

Prior to the war, he won the Giro d’Italia twice. In 1938 he won his first Tour de France. He won another of both titles after the war.

In addition to his feats of athleticism, Bartali is well known for helping and even saving several Jewish families during the 1930s and 1940s. More than a decade after his death Yad Vashem, the Holocaust museum in Israel, recognized him as a Righteous Among the Nations for his efforts.

What is a Google Doodle? 

Google Doodles are illustrations that appear in the Google logo on the search engine’s homepage. The first ever Google Doodle was in honor of Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin’s trip to Burning Man Festival.

The Doodle was just a stick man standing behind the second ‘O’ in Google. 

Recent Google Doodles have celebrated Georges Lemaitre, Fanny Durack and Viola Desmond.