The cycling world has lost a legend today. Chris Boardman, the British cycling champion and Tour de France winner and record holder, has passed away at the age of 52. Boardman had been battling cancer for some time and was recently admitted to hospital in Nottingham with pneumonia.
Boardman retired from professional cycling in 2000 but made a comeback in 2007 where he won gold for England at the Beijing Olympics for the team pursuit event. Boardman continued to lead campaigns for safe cycling including his work as the policy advisor for British Cycling or his popular BBC series The Big Family Cycle Challenge. He is also credited with revolutionizing bicycle design with his invention of the aerodynamic “superbike” which he invented after winning gold at 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Spain.
Chris Boardman’s death and legacy
Boardman has been celebrated for his work as a cyclist, an inventor, and the policy adviser for British Cycling. In 2012 he was awarded an OBE in 2012 for services to cycling. Boardman is survived by his wife and two children.
Chris Boardman gave so much to the world of cycling and will be sorely missed. His legacy lives on through his inventions, his advocacy for safe cycling, and his family who will carry on this legacy in their own way.
Chris Boardman's Cycling Career
Chris Boardman was born on December 12, 1967 in Preston, Lancashire. He is a British cycling champion and Tour de France winner who competed professionally from 1986 to 2000.
Boardman's most notable achievements came in the 1992 Olympics where he won gold for the individual pursuit event. For his win at the Barcelona Olympics, Boardman was awarded the BBC's Sports Personality of the Year and was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for services to cycling.
Boardman retired from professional cycling in 2000 but made a comeback in 2007 where he won gold for England at the Beijing Olympics for the team pursuit event.
He continued to lead campaigns for safe cycling including his work as the policy advisor for British Cycling or his popular BBC series The Big Family Cycle Challenge.
Boardman is also credited with revolutionizing bicycle design with his invention of the aerodynamic “superbike” which he invented after winning gold at 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Spain.
Chris Boardman and the Olympics
Chris Boardman was known for being a champion cyclist, but his work was not limited to cycling. Boardman also won gold at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing in the team pursuit event and helped innovate new ways of designing bikes with his invention of “superbikes” which were aerodynamic.
Boardman took up cycling when he was 12 years old after being inspired by watching Tom Simpson, who died while trying to break the world hour record on an Italian bicycle called a Pantarazzo in 1967. Boardman went on to win Olympic Gold twice, once at 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Spain, and then again four years later at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia.
Boardman would continue to compete until 1998 where he retired from professional racing due to injury and was then appointed as policy advisor for British Cycling before coming out of retirement ten years later when he won gold for England at the Beijing Olympics for the team pursuit event.
Chris Boardman and Designing Bikes
Boardman was known for his ability to innovate in cycling. As a cyclist, Boardman pushed the boundaries of what was possible and as a designer, he has done the same. Boardman invented the famous aero-bike and more recently he led development of the world’s first ever bike that lights up when it moves.
Boardman was also an author where he wrote on various topics from cycling to design or innovation and brought those topics to life with his knowledge and experience. He is the author of How Cycling Can Save The World, which is available on Amazon.
Chris Boardman had a complicated relationship with the Olympics. He eventually came to the conclusion that he had made a mistake and that he should have competed in the Games. After the 2000 Games, Boardman turned his attention to cycling and other design projects. In 2007, Boardman was awarded the prestigious Royal Designer of Industry award, joining past recipients such as Zaha Hadid and Issey Miyake.
The most revealing quote from his acceptance speech was when Boardman said to his son, "I hope you never have to make a decision like this." Chris Boardman died on May 11th, 2016 at his home in Greater Manchester. He had suffered a cardiac arrest and passed away with his family by his side.
Chris Boardman's Legacy: Chris Boardman is remembered as one of the most influential bike designers of all time and for his life-long dedication to cycling. His death has left a hole in the cycling world.