Few sports, aside from crown green bowling perhaps, can boast the number of participants in their mid-thirties who can remain competitive against athletes half their age.
No fewer than seven riders in the current pro peloton will be turning 39 by the end of the 2010 season, meaning that they were all born in 1971.
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The oldest rider is Milram’s Servais Knaven. The Dutchman was born on March 6, 1971, and will therefore be 39 by the time the spring classics arrive.
Comeback man Lance Armstrong is fifth oldest rider in the bunch, he’ll turn 39 in September. If the seven-times Tour de France winner manages to add an eighth victory to his tally in July, he’ll be the oldest rider to have won the Tour. Currently that accolade belongs to Firmin Lambot, who won the Tour in 1922 at the ripe old age of 36. Armstrong became the third oldest rider to win the Tour in 2005, at 34.
These creaking, greying riders will be up against the likes of Thibaut Pino of Francaise des Jeux, who is half Knaven’s age – Pino was born on May 29, 1990.
Cycle Sport magazine calculated the top ten oldest rider’s in the ProTour:
1. Servais Knaven (Ned) Milram – DOB Mar 6, 1971, current age 38
2. Christophe Moreau (Fra) Caisse d’Epargne – DOB April 12, 1971, current age 38
3. Jose-Luis Arrieta (Spa) Ag2r – DOB June 15, 1971, current age 38
4. Jens Voigt (Ger) Saxo Bank – DOB Sept 17, 1971, current age 38
5. Lance Armstrong (USA) RadioShack – DOB Sept 18, 1971, current age 38
6. Frederic Guesdon (Fra) FDJ – DOB Oct 14, 1971, current age 38
7. Chris Horner (USA) RadioShack – DOB Oct 23, 1971, current age 38
8. Robbie McEwen (Aus) Katusha – DOB Jun 24, 1972, current age 37
9. JV Garcia Acosta (Spa) Caisse d’Epargne – DOB Aug 4, 1972, current age 37
10. Alexandre Moos (Swi) BMC – DOB Dec 22, 1972, current age 37
Cycle Sport March 2010 issue is on sale now at WHSmith, major supermarkets and all good newsagents priced £4.10.