A 102 year old Frenchman has smashed his own UCI hour record for riders aged over 100.
This afternoon, in the brand new velodrome in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, that is hoped will become the performance centre for a new wave of world-class French cyclists, centenarian Robert Marchand rode 26.9km, breaking the record he set earlier this week of 24.25km.
The rider from Amiens had the UCI sanctioned category opened specifically for his original hour attempt. He set the first record of 24.25km in February 2012.
Marchand has a history of century breaking records. In 2011 aged 100 he set a new record for cycling 100km. He broke it again in 2012.
French papers have reached for every superlative they can find to describe the rider's heroics. "Sensational, phenomenal, incredible, immortal," claimed Le Figaro.
We're inclined to agree, and if ever for once the term 'chapeau' was warranted, this, surely, is it.