The UCI sanctioned world hour record, considered one of the toughest individual cycling achievements and called “the hardest ride I have ever done” by Eddy Merckx, was attacked by Jens “Shut Up Legs” Voigt on September 18th in the Swiss National velodrome.
The record has been held by numerous cycling luminaries such as Moser, Boardman and Merckx who held the record for 12 years with his average speed of 49.431 km.
You might think the only thing more tedious than riding by yourself in an indoor velodrome for an hour would be to watch a man ride a bicycle in an indoor velodrome for an hour. Not so….it was exciting!
The details are fascinating and the tension was palpable:
- A staff of 20 from Trek
- UCI officials monitoring Jens’ effort on the pursuit bike
- A whistle to communicate his position and splits
- Each lap on the track counted for 250 meters – whether on the shortest line (black) or any other line possible on the banked circuit.
- Thinking “No flats please, stay focused, maintain balance. Go Jens!”
- Jens maintaining an aerodynamic tuck for nearly the entire hour allowing only a few short sprint stands within the last 20 minutes when pain and discomfort were settling in. (Road cyclists can stand on climbs, coast on slight dowhills, move around and change body position.)
51.115 km = 31.761 miles in 1 hour
We know a few cyclists who might be able to catch Jens on a lap and every cyclist can catch us touring around the globe (mostly Colorado), helping transform cycling dreams into awesome memories! But you won’t beat us in creating stunning photo book momentos. We could even beat Jens at that.