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After successfully beating Eddy Merck's Hour Record, Eddy being the last person to set the record using a standard bike, Chris Boardman retired as a Professional Bike Rider at the World Championships in Manchester.

Chris Boardman had revealed earlier that a debilitating medical condition, which requires treatment would not allow him to compete under current UCI rules has brought an end to his career. He was diagnosed with an illness similar to osteoporosis (a brittle bone disease) in 1998.
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Many thanks to Paul Wright for these Early Years photos. They are and remain his copyright. No re-use without permission. Paul now has a website here


ATHLETES HOUR RECORD - EXCLUSIVE PICS

See exclusive photos of the
ATHLETES HOUR, as it happened at Manchester!




Early Years Picture Gallery

Chris in Kodak Colours Riding TT

Chris in Road Race Win - Kodak Colours
Manchester Wheelers - Solo Breakaway
Kodak Criterium Action
Chris Leads Tour of Lancashire
Paul Curran leads Chris in the Tour of Lancashire
Chris wins hot sprint in Tour of Lancashire as Pros follow.
Early TT on the Cheshire Lanes
Very Early Time Trial Days
Chris shadowed by Mark Bell in Criterium Action
Chris & his Dad in 2-up Time Trial
Isle of Man Mountain Time Trial - Climbing
Isle of Man Mountain Time Trial - Chris Descends
Chris leads the NW Velo in team pursuit
National Pursuit Championships
Chris Rides the cobbles
Chris and his NW Velo teammates at the Eddie Soens
Early Track Days
Early Hilly Time Trial Action
Aintree Action - Kodak Days - and the Finish
Chris in the Rain giving it some!



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PREVIOUS EARLY PHOTOS

Fleche Wallonne Belgium (2000)
Training on the Lotus Bike (Aug 1992)
The Lotus Bike (1992)
Weaver Valley Criterium (Jul 1987)
International Mountain TT (Jun 1987)
Southport Gala Crits (Sept 1986)
Isle of Man - Ramsey Kermesse (June 1986)
Isle of Man 25 Mile TT (June 1986)
Three Sisters Criterium (1987)
New Brighton CC 25 TT Broxton (April 1993)
Nova CC 2up (March 1989)
Three Sisters breakaway (April 1989)
Three Sisters Win (April 1989)
Hill Climb Championship (1991)
Delamere Win (1989)
Hope Valley Classic RR (1990)
Phoenix CC 10 Rainford By-Pass (1989)
Wigan Town Centre Crits (1989)
Stretford Wheelers Hardriders - Colin Livsey NEW
More Early Photos - non Paul Wright


 
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Web Site Features
12 Things you never new!
Chris's CV
Problems with the hills pic!
Flash Intro
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Recommended Non Cycling Related Online Sites
  
The Early Years
See more rare photos of Chris during his amature days! click here!
 
Born August 26, 1968, Hoylake,England, U.K, Chris Boardman has developed from a keen  juvenile riding for the Birkenhead Victoria to one of the World's best cyclists! 

He  joined one of the UK's most prestigious clubs, The Manchester Wheelers, as a Junior to following the footsteps of other top time trialists such as Dave Lloyd and Daryll Webster, seeking national titles, under the guidance of mentor Eddie Soens. 

He progressed from National Junior Champion at 25 mile to Senior National Champion, winning 30 national titles in all. 

He became almost unbeatable in the UK time trial scene with only one man, Scotland's Graeme Obree pushing him and occasionally beating him. 
Chris returned to the North Wirral Velo after a lucrative sponsorship deal with photo giants Kodak.

He turned his attention to the Road, taking on the UK's Professional teams and beating them at their own game, despite occasional collusion. But his first love was still riding against the watch and he was often seen on the roads at Broxton near Chester thrashing the locals. ...Like me

Chris in action during the New Brighton CC 25 Mile TT - Broxton.
17th April 1993 - Original Photo Copyright Paul J. Wright
 Photo Courtesy of
Paul J. Wright

1986 - Delamere TT
Chris in action (1986.)
Delamere Invitation TT
More Early Photos
 
In 1992 he became a household name when he won GOLD at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics riding his revolutionary Lotus Bike in the 4000 meter individual pursuit.  Many people who had never previously heard of Chris said that the bike and not the rider had earned the Gold. 

How little they Knew!

 
  
Chris & Le Tour
 
 
    PrologueTick 
    TDF
1994- His first Tour  
 

After Wearing the Yellow Jersey in the 1994 Tour de France and winning the prologue time trial at the highest ever speed recorded in the Tour, he went on to hold the Yellow Yersey for 3 days, until it was lost due to a poor performance by the then weak Gan Team in the Team Time Trial. 

Chris was to miss out on riding in Britain in the Yellow Jersey. 

 
  1995- The Crash!
 
1995 Prologue
 
Picture courtesy of LeTour Official Site
 
He returned in 1995 with high hopes, much more pressure and high expectations.  In the 7.3km prologue he crashed after touching speeds of 50mph and taking too many risks in the terrible conditions.  Chris fractured his left ankle and right arm, putting him out of the Great Race almost before it had begun. 
   
1996- The Struggle
 
He returned in 1996 and was pipped to his second tour prologue win & Yellow Jersey by AlexZulle.  The wet conditions forced Christo take no risks as the previous years crash played on his mind.  Chris finished his first Tour,displaying stong personal determination through the mountain stages and showed he had good recovery by impressive time trial performances during the race. He finished in 39th place, but vowed to return in 1997, basing his season round the event.  When asked about his performance in the 1996 Prologue, he replied... 
"I took the corners like a tourist!"
 
 
1997- The glory & the pain
Zoom!
+
Zoom! = Yellow Jersey
 Re-live the drama of Chris's 1997 Tour de France
Stage by Stage reports upto the 13th July 1997, when he was forced to quit!
 The Pain!
Tour97!

1998- The glory & the pain take II
 
When the Tour started in Ireland in 1998, Chris was considered favorite, despite a run of bad form.  Successes in the UK Prudential Tour leading up to the Tour de France had lifted his moral, but was he fit enough for the toughest race in the world.   Chris surprised no one but himself to win the prologue Time Trail for the third time in five years, beating Abraham Olano by 4 seconds.  Chris stayed in yellow the following day but crashed out on Monday's stage. 

Boardman's bike clipped the rear wheel of team-mate Frederic Moncassin's bike, sending him careering off  the road and into a wall. 
Chris was taken to hospital immediately for a cautionary brain scan, on Doctor's orders, despite asking immediately after the accident if he could remount and get back in the race.   Chris retired from the race, which suffered later on from serious drug and doping allegations now known as the Festina Affair.


Chris & "THE HOUR"
 
His First Hour Record - 1993
 
Chris planned to take on the World Hour Record, at the time held by Francesco Moser 51.151km, but was beaten to it by fellow Brit, Graeme Obree who took the record to 51.569km at Hamar, using his contraversial TUCK position, on a bike that he had built himself. 

He stuck to his plans and only a week later he took the record to 52.270km at Bordeaux on 23/07/93 in humid conditions.
 

Graeme Obree reclaimed the record, then the big guns got involved, both Miguel Indurain & Tony Rominger increased the distance, before Chris stamped his authority on the record, an incredible 56.375km for the hour on a hot September night in Manchester.Chris Turned Professional later in September 1993 for GAN and the restis history 
 
 
The Current Hour Record Holder
56.375km
Setting the World Hour Record at Manchester
Hour Record
Picture courtesy of NandoNews
 
I was privelaged to witness the spectacular thrashing of Tony Rominger's previous Hour Record of 55.291km by Chris at the Manchester Velodrome on 6th September 1996. Eddy Merckx also witnessed the event as he was keen to see Boardman brake the record on one of his bikes. By his own admission Chris was unsure about beating the record at Manchester due to far from ideal conditions. But the huge crowd lifted him to new heights as he motored to a new record of 56.375km for the hour.  Chris even shaved his arms for the attempt,as every possible advantage was sought!
 

The 1996 Olympics
 
After making the Tour de France his main goal for 1996, and finishing well in his first attempt,he decided not to defend his Olympic pursuit title in Altanta, but did ride the Olympic Individual Time Trial, where he won Bronze in the men's 52 kilometre event, with a time of 1 hour 4 minutes and 36 seconds. Five-time Tour de France winner Miguel Indurain of Spain was first (1h4:05) and Abraham Olano, also of Spain, took silver (1h4:17). Later that year he won the World 4000m pursuit title at Manchester.
 
1996 Worlds
Picture courtesy of NandoNews
Final Standings
 
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