Wednesday, September 26, 2007

World cycling championships

In Stuttgart today, the seventh place in the female time-trial event, over a distance of 25 kilometers, was obtained by the illustrious cyclist Jeannie Longo-Ciprelli, from the Dauphiné/Savoy region of France. Jeannie's titles and trophies are awesome:

— 5 times world road-cycling champion;

— 4 times world time-trial champion;

— 3 victories in the feminine Tour de France;

— 19 times French road-cycling champion;

— 7 times French time-trial champion.

In all, Jeannie has held 38 world records of one kind or another.

The most amazing thing about this fabulous cyclist—who finished this morning just 1' 21" behind the German Hanka Kupfernagel (and well ahead of the current French champion in this discipline, Maryline Salvetat), is that Jeannie Longo-Ciprelli is 48 years old! For those of you who are older than that, think back to what you were doing at the age of 48. [Personally, I had just returned to Paris after eighteen months in Perth, Australia. I was leading a dissolute life, and smoking over a packet of cigarettes a day.] At the age of 48, could you have dreamed of finishing seventh in a world sporting championship?

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