Everyone knows how to ride a bike but no one rides one like Alex Howes.
Actually that’s not true. There are a few — but just a few — more cyclists in the world who can ride like Howes, but only because he is one of the elite cyclists in the …
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Actually that’s not true. There are a few — but just a few — more cyclists in the world who can ride like Howes, but only because he is one of the elite cyclists in the world.
The Golden native and 2006 Golden High School native just wrapped up participating in his first Tour de France, one of the world’s biggest sporting events.
Howes was one of just nine American cyclists in the race and was selected from his Garmin-Sharp team who earned the right to participate “The Tour.”
To be selected is one thing to actually finish the grueling and even dangerous race is another. The Tour de France consist of 21 day-long segments (stages) over a 23-day period and cover around 2,200 miles of mountain. Dozens of top riders fail to finish the race each year, succumbing to crashes, illness and fatigue.
“It is something that Alex has worked very hard for,” said Alex’s mother Star Howes. “It has taken him a lot of dedication and discipline to get to this point.”
The 26-year-old University of Colorado graduate found out just one week before the start of the 101st Tour de France that he was selected as one of 26 world class riders from his Garmin-Sharp team.
Howes said in a pre-race interview that he was nervous and excited as he braced himself for his first Tour de France experience.
“It’s nerve-wracking and it’s exciting. It’s one of those things where, in a way, it’s just like any other bike race but the difference is all your buddies back home, your parents and your family and your grandma and whoever else, they’re actually going to read about you racing a bike for the first time,” Howes said in an interview with Velo News.
Howes successfully completed his first Tour de France, and he hopes that his Tour experience will be the first of many but in a super-competitive global sport like cycling opportunities like he had are rare.
And the humble Howes expressed that in several pre-race interviews, saying that he was going to soak up the once in a lifetime experience.
And it is fitting that Howes mentioned his family in those interviews because he may owe some of his success to his other team back in Colorado.
Howes mother said that he came from a family that made cycling a “lifestyle,” and his father is a very solid amateur rider.
However, Howes is already also a global star, having super-fans all over the world including France and Japan. Howes resides in Boulder half the time and he lives in Girona, Spain, the other half, as he trains year around.
Besides being selected to participate in his first Tour de France, Howes has already accomplished a lot in the professional cycling world.
Howes riding resumé includes a first place finish (stage 2) at the 2012 Tour of Utah, a sixth place finish at the 2012 De Brabantse Pijl, a fourth place finish at the 2011 Tour de Beauce, a first place finish at the 2009 U23 Nationals Road Race and a first place finish at the 2009 U23 Nationals Criterium.
Vincenzo Nibali was the winner of the 101st Tour de France, as he led for 18 days out of the 21 days.
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