French 100-year-old Robert Marchand back on bike for another record-breaking ride

Robert Marchand aiming today to ride 100km faster than anyone his age has ever managed

by Simon_MacMichael   September 28, 2012  

Robert Marchand (picture credit UCI)

Robert Marchand, the French centenarian who earlier this year broke the age group world record for The Hour, is aiming to break another record – this time for riding 100 kilometres faster than anyone his age has ever managed before.

Today, Marchand, who will turn 101 in November, aims to cover the distance in less than five hours with an average speed of 22.5 kilometres an hour, reports Yahoo! Eurosport.

"If I make it, I'll become the best in the world," he said, "I know that all over the world, in China, in the United States, in Russia, they're already looking for someone to beat my record."

The distance shouldn’t prove too much for Marchand, who lives in Mitry-Mory near Paris. Earlier this year, he revealed: “For the last five years I have decided not to go for rides of more than 100km. There is no point going overboard. I want to keep cycling for some time yet.”

He has ridden the Ardèchoise every year since the sportive was launched in 1992, when he was aged 79, and even has a mountain pass in the area named after him, the Col Robert Marchand, which has an elevation of 911 metres – the last three digits of his year of birth.

Marchand, a former gym instructor to the Paris fire brigade who also boxed and was a decent weightlifter in his younger days, has attracted the attention of scientists keen to find out what lies behind his vitality.

Every three months, he undergoes tests at the Inserm public research institute in Switzerland.

"They told me I had the constitution of a 55-year-old man, they think it's genetic," he explained.

"I have never deprived myself of anything: not wine, not food, not women, but always with moderation."

When asked if he planned to get any artificial help for his ride, Marchand insisted: "The only doping for me is water with a spoonful of honey that I put in my canteen - and that's it."

"If I was doping, though, maybe I could hit 35 km/h," he added.
 

12 user comments

Oldest firstNewest firstBest rated

He's such a cool dude, KUDOS to him.

posted by Tonnio [35 posts]
28th September 2012 - 9:32

1 Like

fantastic, inspiration for us all ...

posted by Karbon Kev [682 posts]
28th September 2012 - 9:43

0 Likes

This guy is a star:

"I have never deprived myself of anything: not wine, not food, not women, but always with moderation."

OldRidgeback

posted by OldRidgeback [2308 posts]
28th September 2012 - 10:23

2 Likes

He should have sponsors queuing up for endorsements.

antonio

antonio's picture

posted by antonio [1013 posts]
28th September 2012 - 10:25

2 Likes

I can do moderation on the wine and food but not the women. Wink

posted by Tonnio [35 posts]
28th September 2012 - 10:27

2 Likes

Totally amazing. Bon chance, Robert.

posted by The Rumpo Kid [590 posts]
28th September 2012 - 15:19

1 Like

I love this guy, he's got panache alright.

posted by Nick T [844 posts]
28th September 2012 - 17:32

1 Like

The UCI actually did test him for doping after his hour record. I'd imagine it took a while waiting for him to produce a sample.

posted by Nick T [844 posts]
28th September 2012 - 17:34

3 Likes

I've still got 60 years of riding ahead of me, and not just bikes!!! Truly inspirational!

posted by mogrim [41 posts]
28th September 2012 - 17:56

1 Like

He did it! 4.17.27, Avg 23.3kph. Surely someone should give him a medal.(M. Hollande, perhaps?)

posted by The Rumpo Kid [590 posts]
28th September 2012 - 21:16

1 Like

Superb old bloke.

posted by Cauld Lubter [122 posts]
29th September 2012 - 1:01

0 Likes

I hit 50 in June and thought that I might have another 10 years of cycling. Robert has helped me look quite a few years further forward. What a cool guy!

Trying not to bonk!

Hypoglycaemic's picture

posted by Hypoglycaemic [22 posts]
29th September 2012 - 1:22

1 Like