102-Year-Old Robert Marchand Breaks Speed Cycling World Record

Sean ODonnellContributor IIIFebruary 1, 2014

French cyclist Robert Marchand, aged 102, cycles in a bid to beat his record for distance cycled in one hour, at the velodrome of Saint-Quentin en Yvelines, outside Paris, Friday, Jan. 31, 2014. The 102-year-old broke his own world record in the over-100s category Friday, riding 26.927 kilometers (16.7 miles) in one hour, more than 2.5 kilometers better than his previous best time in the race against the clock two years ago. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)
Thibault Camus/Associated Press

Robert Marchand, a 102-year-old cyclist, just broke his own world record on Friday.

He rode 26.927 kilometers (16.7 miles) in one hour, beating his previous record by more than 2.5 kilometers, according to The Associated Press (via ESPN.com). This new record keeps him well atop the 100-plus age group.

The fact that Marchand accomplished such a feat at his advanced age is truly remarkable. However, that's not the only cycling record he owns.

Thibault Camus/Associated Press

Marchand also holds the 100-plus age group record for riding 100 kilometers, per The Independent's Lizzie Dearden. He set the record in that distance back in 2012 at four hours, 17 minutes and 27 seconds.

Photographers absolutely engulfed Marchand as he reached the finish line on Friday, according to Dearden. He received a well-deserved standing ovation from everyone in attendance.

During an interview, Marchand was brief and to the point regarding the amount of support that he received. Per the AP, he said, "You have to know there are people who came from 600 kilometers away to see me today! It is incredible. That's all I can say."

What's next for the 102-year-old cyclist? According to Shane Stokes of Velonation.com, he might be back for more next year. 

"Attempting such a performance is a satisfaction," Marchand said before the record-setting ride. "I have the opportunity to try again, and I want to do that, because maybe next year I could do more. So I'll go [for the attempt], and if I succeed I will be proud."