Cycling is a sport defined by riders who can suffer more than mere mortals. But even among the select group of hard men and women, there are those who simply stand above the rest. Here is the third installment of the Global Cycling Network‘s Toughest cyclists in the history of pro bike racing. You can see part 1 here and part 2 here.
From fighting back from awful injuries, to redefining ultra-endurance cycling, these four cyclists show just how tough cyclists can be.
Mark Beaumont: While breaking the round-the-world record Beaumont crashed on day 9, but still continued with a chipped tooth and fractured elbow.
Andy Hampsten: The American makes the list for one of the most brutal stages ever in pro cycling, stage 14 of the 1988 Giro d’Italia over the Passo Gavia. Hampsten rode into the pink jersey in conditions that had riders crying in pain from the cold on the descent of the Gavia.
Annemiek Van Vleuten: When she crashed on the final descent while leading the Olympic road race, Van Vleuten’s three fractured vertebrae led many to believe her career could be over. But not only was she back on the bike 10 days later, she went on to the best season of her career, even winning her first world championship.
Fiorenzo Magni: The original Lion of Flanders, Magni is most famous for his exploits at the 1956 Giro d’Italia. When he broke his left collarbone in a crash, Magni attached a piece of innertube to his bars that he would grip with his teeth to aid with leverage. As if this wasn’t enough, Magni crashed again, breaking his left humerus and passing out. But Magni came to, climbed out of the ambulance, and finished the stage. He even eventually finished second overall.
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