Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Ryder Hesjedal

Over three weeks this month, a 31-year-old cyclist from Victoria, British Columbia rode his bike for over 90 hours around Italy with 188 of his peers.  When the dust/rain/sleet/snow had settled in Madrid at the conclusion of the final stage, a 28.1KM individual time trial, he'd covered the Giro 16 seconds faster than his nearest rival, going down in history as the first Canadian cyclist to not only podium in a grand tour, but to win it all.

For the Canadian cycling fan, the win was twice as sweet as the victory came riding Canadian bikes (the Cervelo R5CA for the road stages and the Cervelo P5 for the time trials). 
The Ryder P5 getting a final tune-up pre-stage 22.
In my twelve years in Toronto I feel like we've already seen a bit of a 'bike boom' and the phrase 'cycling is the new golf' has been thrown around a lot the last couple of years, hopefully this win and some media coverage will encourage more people to get out and ride beautifully around our gorgeous country that was made for exploring outdoors. 

Pretty cool career so far for a guy who's been a two-time Olympian (mountain biking in 2004, road race and time trial in 2008), a national champion (2007 Canadian time-trial champion), a silver medalist a the World Championships (mountain biking cross-country, 2003), winner of a stage in each of the three grand tours (solo in the Vuelta d'Espana, Team Time Trials in both the Giro and the Tour de France) and now the GC winner of a Grand Tour (2012 Giro d'Italia).  Enjoy, to the victor go the spoils!

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