Chris Boardman is the 2017 winner of the Cross Sports Cycling Book of the Year for his autobiography Triumphs and Turbulence.
‘The true inspiration was that Olympic gold won by Chris Boardman in Barcelona… I was so in awe of Chris Boardman’ Sir Bradley Wiggins
You may know him as the much-loved co-presenter of ITV’s Tour de France coverage or enjoyed his BBC Olympic coverage, but beyond the easy charm Chris Boardman is one of our greatest, most inspiring cyclists.
Boardman’s lone achievements in the 80s and 90s – Olympic track gold, the world hour record, repeatedly claiming the yellow jersey in the Tour de France – were the spark that started the modern era for British cycling. His endeavours both on and off the bike have made him the founding father of current golden generation – without him there would simply be no Hoy, Wiggins or Cavendish.
It is a story full of intrigue: from Olympic success, to the famous duels with Graeme Obree and the insanity of the Tour de France. Chris became a legend for his combination of physical ability and technical preparation, almost single-handedly taking British cycling from wool shirts and cloth caps into the era of marginal gains. Indeed, after his career on the bike ended, a new chapter began as the backroom genius behind GB cycling. As head of the R&D team known as The Secret Squirrel Club, Chris has been responsible for the technical innovations that made the difference in 2012 and developed Boardman Bikes, which has become the country's bestselling premium bike range.
An Enjoyable Read
Easy page turner with a great narrative flow. Detail without overload.
Great read for cycling fans
This was supposed to be my summer holiday read but couldn't resist starting it straight away. Finished in 24hrs as I couldn't put it down. It's a fascinating look into the mind of someone I always regarded as being ultra-confident. As a schoolboy on the Merseyside racing scene in the 90s, Chris is and was a legend to me. He always had time to say hello to all other cyclists even though he was in a different league to everyone else. I was his minute man in a TT a few weeks before Barcelona '92 and as the first two finishers, I had the chance to have a quick chat with him after. I never realised until I read this book that he doubted his abilities at that time. My only criticism of the book (if you can call it that) is that he is far too modest and doesn't go into the details of many of his victories as a pro. A quick look at his palmares shows that he was a far more successful pro than he is often given credit for (even when he is writing his own reviews which he is doing here essentially). This is even more impressive when you consider that he raced clean at the peak of the doping era. His accounts of working for Team GB are also fascinating and offer a great insight into the world of 'marginal gains'(though he keeps the specific details secret!)
A true legend of British cycling and a great read for any fan of the sport.