TIME Cycling

102-Year-Old Cyclist Robert Marchand Sets World Record

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Robert Marchand, 102, rides to beat his own hourly record at the National Velodrome of Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines in Montigny-le-Bretoneux, Jan. 31, 2014. Lionel Bonaventure—AFP/Getty Images

When your age hits the triple digits, it's like riding a bike

Forget the Tour de France. Here’s a true tour de force.

At an age when most people are, well, not even around anymore, Robert Marchand still rides his bike with panache. In fact, he’s a world beater.

On Friday, the Frenchman, 102 years young, pedaled his bike around a velodrome, or indoor cycling track, a distance of 26.9 kilometers (16.7 miles) in one hour, establishing a centenarian record. That Herculean effort beat the previous record of 24.25 kilometers, which he himself owned, reports Le Parisien.

The remarkable achievement was given the thumbs-up by the International Cycling Union, the governing body of world cycling, in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, France.

Marchand may not be as fast as the current world record holder for the distance traveled in one hour on a conventional road bike—that honor belongs to the Czech Republic’s Ondřej Sosenka, who traveled 49.7 kilometers (nearly 30.9 miles) in 2005—but how can you not be impressed with this flying Frenchman?

[Le Parisien]

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