Bike Geek Graeme Obree and the World Hour Record

| February 18, 2002 Issue

Bike Geek: Graeme Obree and the World Hour Record, John Stesney, Failure Magazine
Graeme Obree's story is of an outsider bicyclist trying to infiltrate an "old boy's club" mentality in European cycling. Obree was dedicated to winning the World Hour Record, a race in which bikers have one hour to cover as much distance as possible in a velodrome, and held the crown twice, in 1993 and 1995. But the Scotsman never received the recognition of other record holders in this most grueling of all cycling events, because he refused to play by the same rules. In Failure Magazine, John Stesney writes about how Obree ignored the proper rules of decorum. "By abandoning the cycling establishment, Obree broke the rules of who is permitted to be a champion," Stesney writes. "Not only was Obree unwilling to pay his dues, he didn't look or act like a world class cyclist..." Obree seems destined to exist in obscurity only remembered by those who have seen his aerodynamic form co-opted by other world-class cyclists.
Sara V. Buckwitz
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