“The Sherrif” to Police the Peloton in Pasadena
Francesco Moser, the third most winningest cyclist in history, will participate in the upcoming Gran Fondo Giro d’Italia in Pasadena, California, on July 22nd. Earning the nickname “The Sherriff” for his strong presence in the peloton, he dominated the global cycling scene from the early 1970s to the mid 1980s, amassing 273 career victories.
An innovator in the sport, Moser was one of the first to understand the importance of aerodynamics on the bicycle. In January 1984, he astonished the world by beating Eddy Merckx’s world hour record, covering an impressive 31.78 miles, besting Merckx’s 12-year-old record by over a mile.
Later in the same year, Moser won the Giro d’Italia, in a dramatic time trial final stage against French athlete Laurent Fignon, who was leading with 1’21”. He won the stage using his special aerodynamic time trial bicycle and took the overall title in the Giro, by 1’03” over Fignon. The time trial was memorable and redefined the standards of the sport. Moser’s success changed bicycle design dramatically, by proving that aerodynamic equipment such as disk wheels were a winning formula for races against the clock.
In his career, he won two world championships, one in the road race (1977) and one on the track (Individual Pursuit, 1976). His remarkable victories in the one-day classics include three in a row at the grueling Paris-Roubaix race (1978-1980), two Tours of Lombardy (1975 & 1978), Milano – San Remo (1984), La Flèche Wallonne (1977), Paris-Tours (1974), and Gent-Wevelgem (1979).
Today the champion is enjoying la Dolce Vita, and is a successful wine producer in his beloved region of Trentino, Italy. While keeping in shape with daily rides, Moser is now focused on his winery, Cantine Moser, which produces a number of acclaimed wines, including Gewuertztraminer, Muller Turgau, Moscato Giallo and a Spumante Trento DOC, branded ’51.151′ just like his epic world hour record distance (in kilometers), which features a pink label, in honor of the Giro D’Italia winner’s jersey.
Moser will ride the Gran Fondo on Sunday, as well as attend the V.I.P. reception the evening before the ride where there will be photo and autograph opportunities.
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