It happened to all of us at some point of our careers. While we were struggling to perform at our best and feeling pretty good about ourselves in the process, somebody else came along and did our gig like a piece of cake. Those were probably the feelings of Frenchman Axel Carion and Swede Andreas Fabricius who are currently trying to beat the standing 58-days record for riding the length of South America on bikes. While they were puffing up a hill in Antioquia, Colombia, they noticed they have company.
Luis, a local farmer, passed them by with ease and even gifted them with a few curious looks. Dressed in baggy jeans and ordinary non-aerodynamic shirt, he casually pedalled by on his green dusty boneshaker bike with a heavy-looking bag tied in the back. The guy who took the footage can be heard shouting in Spanish: “This is because he is stronger than us. We are in pain now.” Then he adds a jab at his fellow cycling friend in French: “Andreas is being ridiculed!” The guys seem to take the whole situation light-heartedly but we bet that deep down their spirits felt pretty bummed out.
On the other hand, local media reported that Luis rides around 62 miles daily and is familiar with the hilly landscape. And yes, we are well aware the cyclists might have been on the road all day while Luis just might have rolled out of home to go to work, therefore being more rested. These excuses are just as good as any but won’t put out that burning feeling of defeat.
If all goes well and they are not too discouraged, they will finish their 7,450-mile trip in the Argentinian town of Ushuaia hopefully before 25th February to beat the record.
As one social media user, named Roger Linares Zapata, aptly remarked: “Welcome to Colombia, where people have cheap bicycles but a strong spirit.”