105 Year Old Robert Marchand Just Set a New Hour Record, Cycling Over 14 Miles
“I did not see the sign warning me I had 10 minutes left. Otherwise I would have gone faster..."
105 year old cyclist Robert Marchand has just set a new Hour Record of 22.547km – by cycling more than 14 miles in sixty minutes.
Given, it might not be quite as quick as Sir Bradley Wiggins’ effort, with Wiggins hitting 33.88 miles in the hour, but the achievement completed is the first ever in the new Hour Record category for Masters aged 105 or over.
Marchand was born in 1911 in Amiens, near the frontline of the First World War just three years before war broke out. He was jailed during World War Two, reportedly for failing to instruct the children of Nazi collaborators while working as a gym instructor, and has also spent time working as a firefighter, a lorry driver in Venezuela and a lumberjack in Canada.
Marchand was the first to set an hour record in the over-100s category back in 2012, beating his own record two years later when he turned 102.
On that occasion, he covered more than 16 miles, and an array of fans turned out at the national velodrome at Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines near Paris to watch him ride again.
The Frenchman only actually took up cycling again in the 1990s, though he was a keen rider in his youth as well. He still rides with his local club every weekend and also makes daily trips to the gym – and he actually thinks he could have gone faster.
“I did not see the sign warning me I had 10 minutes left, said Marchand, according to The Guardian. “Otherwise I would have gone faster. I would have posted a better time. I’m now waiting for a rival."
His physiologist Veronique Billat agreed, stating: “He could have been faster but he made a big mistake. He has stopped eating meat over the past month after being shocked by recent reports on how animals are subjected to cruel treatment."
Marchand’s coach Gerard Mistler added: “Setting goals for himself is part of his personality. If he tells me he wants to improve his record, I’ll be game. Robert is a great example for all of us."