On and off the bike, Cadel Evans has produced some memorable moments. Well, according to YouTube, most of those seem to have come off the bike.
Australia’s most successful cyclist called time on his long and prestigious career in February, a career that saw him not only take the top accolades on the road, including the 2011 Tour de France and the 2009 World Championship Road Race, but off-road as well, taking victory at the Mountain Bike World Cup twice in the cross-country event.
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Here we take a small glimpse back at the career of the man they call ‘Cuddles’ as told by YouTube, from some of his more temperamental moments to some of his greatest wins, ordered by the number of views they’ve received on the video site.
1. “Don’t touch me!”
Evans had a few run-ins with journalists at the Tour de France, and this one in 2008 is probably the most infamous. Appearing alongside his personal bodyguard Serge Borlee, the high pitch telling off and the hand slap the journalist receives shows that the Tour leader really, really doesn’t want to be touched.
2. “I cut your head off!”
If Cadel doesn’t want you to touch him, then he definitely doesn’t want you to touch his dog. The Tour de France lasts a long time, so who wouldn’t want some canine companionship while your vying for victory in the world’s biggest bike race? No shrieking or slapping here though in 2008, just the calmly uttered threat of “I cut your head off.” This moment became so popular that the man himself even started selling t-shirts that said “DON’T STAND ON MY DOG” on the front.
3. The headbutt
Seriously, don’t touch him.
4. Cadel accidentally sprays Cav
Not only will Cadel Evans slap you, scream at you, threaten to decapitate you if you touch him (or his dog), but he’ll also chuck water over you, as this unfortunate man adorning the Vittel outfit found out. What Cadel doesn’t realise however, is that there’s a just as temperamental rider in the firing line. The best part is definitely watching the moment of realisation that it’s Mark Cavendish he’s just lightly sprayed, with desperate apologies and a shake of the head to follow. Smooth.
5. The Righi fight
Some fisticuffs in the bunch now, as the rainbow clad Evans takes exception to the actions of one Daniele Righi at the Giro d’Italia in 2010, saying at the time that “Righi made a mistake, he’s dangerous. He went to the front and braked. You don’t do that.” Obviously Righi didn’t get the ‘no touching’ memo either.
6. Showdown at Grenoble
Now to the proper stuff. Evans’ win at the Tour de France in 2011 was the crowning glory of a particularly successful career, leaving it until late in the day to make his move. The Australian smashed the time trial on the penultimate stage of the Tour, to overturn a 57 second deficit to leader Andy Schleck and steal the yellow jersey. Chapeau.
7. 2009 World Championships win
Evans broke away from the bunch on the final lap of the 262km race in Mendrisio, Switzerland in 2009, to take the world championship title . The first Australian to win it, Evans went on to join BMC the next year, winning a stage at the Giro and spring classic La Flèche Wallonne in the rainbow jersey. No curse here.