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Publisher Description

How many times had Philippe repeated this sentence, as his successes, ever more prestigious, were mounting up? 'I'm benefiting from it!', like the 'carpe diem' immortalised two thousand years earlier by the Roman poet, Horace. Like the magic of the moment, the pleasures of which one savours without knowing whether they will ever be reproduced. It was with that exact mindset that the world number one, the best cyclist of the year, the most titled modern-era rider of the classics, evolved during the four seasons of the exceptional year 2011, the one of his summit and his glory, where all his dreams, or almost, came true. Phil benefitted from his form, his talent, his work, his audacity and his character to pull off 19 major successes, including the two Ardennes classics, two national titles, the first stage of the Tour De France and the distinctive jerseys that accompanied him. On the podium of the Walloon Arrow, in Huy, Bernard Hinault himself said this: 'You see kid, you've done it, and there was no reason to fear the gradient of the Wall of Huy. Benefit, benefit: when you're in such form, you have to jump on everything that moves.' And he benefitted from it, beyond, perhaps, his wildest dreams. He indulged, while offering his public emotions of rare intensity. He has brought some pages of history to Belgian cycling on a cloud that it will be good to immortalise when the time comes. But Phil did not want to wait for the archives of his memory, rightly believing that this exceptional 2011 season might never again be reproduced. Rather than postponing sine die his emotions, his memories and his anecdotes into an end-of-career book, he has... benefitted from the freshness of his feelings to recount them hard on the heels of a breathtaking adventure, in a pulsating account of his victories that he dissects with meticulousness, precision, and passion.

Sports & Recreation
25 January
Uitgeverij Lannoo