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He acquired the nickname "The Cannibal" after a teammate told his daughter of how Merckx would not let anyone else win, and the daughter referred to him as a cannibal.

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Merckx broke the hour record in October 1972, extending the record by almost 800 meters.He is one of the three riders to win all five 'Monuments of Cycling' (i.e., Milan–San Remo, Tour of Flanders, Paris–Roubaix, Liège–Bastogne–Liège, and the Giro di Lombardia), the other two being Rik Van Looy and Roger De Vlaeminck.He was also the first rider to win all three major classifications – the general, points, and mountains classifications – in one Grand Tour at the 1968 Giro d'Italia, and again at the 1969 Tour de France.Édouard Louis Joseph, baron Merckx (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈmɛrks]) (born 17 June 1945), better known as Eddy Merckx, is a Belgian former professional road and track bicycle racer who is widely seen as the most successful rider in the history of competitive cycling.His victories include an unequalled eleven Grand Tours (five Tours of France, five Tours of Italy, and a Tour of Spain), all of the five Monuments, three World Championships, the Hour Record, every major one-day race other than Paris-Tours, and extensive victories on the track.He co-owns the tour and also the Tour of Oman, both of which he still organizes.

He is ranked as the all-time number 1 cyclist according to Cycling Ranking Milan–San Remo, his first participation in one of cycling's Monuments, was the next event on the calendar for Merckx.

Since Merckx's retirement from the sport on , he has remained active in the cycling world.

He began his own bicycle chain, Eddy Merckx Cycles, in 1980 and its bicycles were used by several professional teams in the 1980s and 1990s.

There, he succeeded in staying with the main field as the race entered the final climb of the Poggio.

During the twelfth stage of the 1968 Giro d'Italia, Merckx caught the leading group, passed them, and rode solo to the stage finish atop the Tre Cime di Lavaredo (pictured) in poor weather to win the stage and take the race lead.

He is widely thought to be the greatest and most successful rider in the history of cycling.