About the hour record                                                                   Home Page

The first hour ride on record was in 1876 when the American Frank Dodds rode 26.5 km on a penny-farthing. Taking their cue from athletics, all the early racing cyclists were paced. The strict rules about unpaced riding did not appear until about 10 years later, first applied by the RRA (Road Records Association) and later adopted by the UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale) for time-trial type events on road and track. The first unpaced hour record was set by Henri Desgrange in 1893 at 35.325km. The current hour record for elite riders is held by Bradley Wiggins at 54.5 km but the UCI also recognise records for non-elite riders. On their Best Performance list are the hour records for various 5-year age groups, some of which are shown below.

Sidney thought if a 102-year-old cyclist can do 27km in an hour then at 84 he could too. So he went to the Olympic Velodrome (now called the Lee Valley VeloPark) and booked a taster session. It was his first time on any track and after that he was hooked and started training. Sidney had help and encouragement from family (Mary, Julie and Ruby) and friends and from Natasha Banks (Velodrome) and Paul West (British Cycling) who between them made this event possible. It was an uproariously enjoyable evening and as Julie said: "It's just perfect, we all have a party and dad gets to ride his bike."

Timeline for the best performance hour records by over-eighties:

Date Name Distance Age range

January 2014

Robert Marchand

26.9 km

100 to 104

September 2014

Sidney Schuman

28.4 km

80 to 84

October 2015

Wally Fowler

35 km

80 to 84

January 2017

Robert Marchand

22.5 km


September 2017

Guiseppe Marinoni

39 km

80 to 84 

September 2017

Gilbert Douillard

34 km

85 to 89 

October 2017

Rene Gaillard

29 km

90 to 94