Some sporting moments are best enjoyed in slow motion – Muhammad Ali’s ‘phantom punch’ that floored Sonny Liston, or the Shane Warne ‘Ball of the Century’ – his first-ever Ashes delivery – that dismissed a bamboozled Mike Gatting at Old Trafford in 1993. And now, we have … Chris Horner’s bike toss at the Philadelphia International Cycling Classic yesterday.
It’s easy for those of us in Europe to forget that the 2013 Vuelta winner is still racing. Since leaving Lampre-Merida at the end of 2014, the baby-faced 44-year-old has been riding almost exclusively in the United States, this season with the Lupus Racing Team.
On the final climb of Lemon Hill during yesterday’s race, Horner’s chain shipped on one of the worst parts of the course for that to happen, the slow-motion footage capturing first his efforts to reseat the chain, then his frustration as he realises any chance to contest the win has gone.
After bouncing his bike off the road surface (and almost into a media moto), a pensive looking Horner then takes aim at a water bottle rolling towards him … and in a technique we’d love to see Premier League penalty takers employ, until the very last second it looks as though he’s going to hoof it with his right foot, until switching to his left to dispatch it.
Horner finished the race in 45th place, 1 minute 18 seconds behind the winner, Spanish rider Eduard Prades of the Caja Rural-Seguros RGA team.
Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.