Riding with a great...humble...Australian

johnWe have been talking for some time now about our charity ride in Tasmania, raising money for 3 fabulous organisations in Australia (read more) but this article is dedicated to one of our participants, John,  who is raising money for StGiles (CLICK HERE TO DONATE) and we are nothing but honoured to have him on board !

(Photo Credit: Waratah Masters, taken at the Hartbergerland World Cycling Week, August 2019)

It was some time back I got to know John personally, in fact as I sit down and write this article, I fail to recall our first encounter, nonetheless I will never forget how this man instantaneously inspired me from the minute we exchanged words.

John is one of those gentlemen who ooze with happiness and passion, he doesn’t really have to say much, you understand by his fixed golden smile (as wide as Sydney Harbour) and his relaxed (fit as a fiddle) body language....then you meet his wife Helen and wow, you start wondering is there a chance they may want to adopt you!

You would never know much about how successful John is, a humble man from birth I am sure, not sharing much on his accomplishments. .... But over the years I learnt he is fluent in Spanish, knows more about rocks and soils than anyone else, works in the geology/mineral industry, likes a good wine and is dangerous on two wheels. He isn’t one to boast about his successful career, beautiful marriage and amazingly raised children…. but no one who knows John, has a bad word to say, other than what a beautiful soul he is!

The rumour about the fact he is a very successful cyclist is something you wouldn’t waste your time asking him about, because he won’t admit it, but he gets around, you know what I mean. As much as he may try to hide it, he does pop up more than often on the world wide web who successfully expose him!

It isn’t uncommon to find John’s name appear in some UCI article, showing his place on a podium, holding a trophy or being interviewed.  Below are a few articles to help you understand a little more about what I mean!

And the list goes on….

In fact, I finally got a full list of John’s achievements from 2006-2019, take a look for yourself (and don’t blame me if you feel inadequate by the time you get to the end !)

2006

  • Australian Masters Road TT - M7 2nd
  • Australian Masters Road Race – M7 1st
  • NSW Masters TT – M7 2nd
  • Coonabarabran-Gunnedah Sundowner handicap - +50 1st

2007

  • Australian Masters Road Race - M7 2nd
  • NSW Masters Criterium - M7 1st
  • NSW Masters TT - M7 2nd

2008

  • Southern Hemisphere Cup - C Grade 1st

2009

  • NSW Masters Hill Climb - M7 2nd
  • 26/7/2009 NSW TT Calga
  • Australian Masters TT - M7 2nd

2013

  • Sydney Road Titles 3rd
  • UCI World Cycling Tour (UWCT) Rottnest TT – 65+ 1st
  • UWCT Perth RR – 65+ 1st
  • UCI Masters GF Trento RR

2014

  • UWCT Perth TT- 65+ 1st
  • UWCT Perth RR – 65+ 1st
  • UCI Gran Fondo World Championships Slovenia TT – 65-70 5th
  • 14/9/2014 Amys Gran Fondo - 65+ 1st

2015

  • UWCT Perth TT – 65+ 1st
  • UWCT Perth RR – 65+ 1st
  • Amys Gran Fondo – 65+ 2nd
  • Australian Masters RR M8 3nd
  • Australian Masters TT M8 2nd
  • Fitz’s Challenge – 65+ fastest time
  • Newcrest Challenge Orange - 65+ fastest time

2016

  • UWCT TT Perth – 70+ 1st
  • UWCT RR Perth – 70+ 1st
  • Blayney to Bathurst Gran Fondo – 70+ 2nd
  • NSW Masters RR – M9 2nd
  • NSW Masters Criterium – M9 1st
  • NSW Masters TT – M9 2nd
  • Ruta de Minera Spain – 65+ fastest time
  • UCI Gran Fondo World Championships Perth TT – 70-74 1st
  • UCI Gran Fondo World Championships Perth RR – 70-74 3rd
  • Amy’s Gran Fondo – 70+ 1st
  • Australian Masters RR - M9 3rd
  • Australian Masters TT – M9 2nd
  • Bowral Classic – 65+ fastest time
  • Australian Master of Year nominee

2017

  • Australian Masters Gran Fondo - 64+ 3rd
  • Peaks Challenge Falls Creek – 65+ fastest time
  • Blayney to Bathurst GF – M9 1st
  • NSW Masters RR – M9 2nd
  • NSW Masters TT – M9 2nd
  • UCI Gran Fondo World Championships Albi France TT – 70-74 4th
  • Amys Gran Fondo – 70-74 1st
  • Australian Masters TT – M9 1st
  • Australian Masters RR – M9 3rd

2018

  • Peaks Challenge Falls Creek – 65+ fastest time
  • Blayney to Bathurst Gran Fondo - 70+ 1st
  • Gran Fondo Serre Chevalier, France - 65+ 3rd
  • Giro delle Dolomiti, Italy - 65+ 3rd
  • World Masters Cycling Federation St Johann in Tirol TT – Age group 5th
  • Amy’s Gran Fondo – 70+ 1st
  • NSW Masters TT – M9 1st
  • Australian Masters TT – M9 1st
  • Australian Masters RR – M9 3rd

2019

  • Blayney to Bathurst Gran Fondo – 70+ 2nd
  • Newcrest Challenge Orange - 65+ fastest time
  • Tour de Brisbane Gran Fondo - 70+ 2nd
  • L’Etape UK - 65+ fastest time
  • Giro delle Dolomiti - 65+ 4th
  • World Masters Cycling Week Hartberg – Age group 2nd, 2nd, 3rd & 4th GC
  • World Masters Cycling Federation St Johann in Tirol Road Race – Age group 4th
  • World Masters Cycling Federation St Johann in Tirol TT – 4th
  • Amy’s Gran Fondo - 70-74 1st
  • Australian Masters TT - M9 1st
  • Bowral Classic - 70+ 1st
  • 2003-219 ATTA NSW Time Trials Calga - Standard Time Placings – 23 x1st, 14 X 2nd, 5 x 3rd

Your Thoughts? Wow eh! ;-)

john angliruIn June 2019, we had the pleasure of showing John and several of his friends around some of our favourite locations in Northern Spain and I will admit now, I was very much looking forward to seeing John take on the Angliru – considered by the Pro’s as the toughest climb in Europe.

Alberto Contador, winner of a stage finishing at Angliru in the 2008 Vuelta, described it as the hardest mountain he has ever climbed - tougher than the likes of Zoncolan because the gradient is so inconsistent.

The climb is only 12.5km long with an average gradient of a shade over 10%; however, the first 6km average only 6%, making it a very top-heavy climb.

The real climbing begins just after the recreation area at Via Pará. After a sharp half a kilometre you reach Les Cabannes, a 400m section which touches 22% gradient at times.

From here the climb very rarely falls below 11% until the 12km mark. There are further significant ramps at sections names Lagos (14.5%), Les Picones (20%), Cobayos (21.5%), Cuena les Cabres (23.5%), El Aviru (21.5%) and Les Piedrusines (20%), before it eases off considerably for the last half kilometre.

johnangliruJohn and his very good friend Barry (who you can see jumping in joy) took on Angliru as if it was nothing, smashing over the 20%+ gradients reaching the top as if they had taken a Sunday stroll. It was an incredible achievement and something else to be there, present to watch both John and Barry reach the peak.

Having John with us in Tasmania is an honour, our participants are very fortunate to have such a successful rider join the peloton, bringing a wealth of experience to this great event.

John, thank you for being part of our 100% Charity Ride where we guarantee that every cent your raise for StGiles will go direct to the children and adults they assist. And Helen, thank you for letting us have him!!

Be sure to DONATE to John's Circumnavigation Ride: https://give.everydayhero.com/au/john-horsburgh-maglia-nera-tassie-ride

 

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