The Roar
The Roar


Jens Voigt’s hour-record attempt: Great marketing, great fun

Jens Voigt once held the hour record. (Photo by Joe Frost)
19th September, 2014

Jens Voigt is the people’s hero. We all love him. He says things like he could “taste the blood” in his mouth and “it was great” when reflecting on the ordeal.

You might also know him from the whole “shut up legs” movement, which is fantastically expected of such German diligence.

Now he is preparing for the most surprising 3600-second distance attempt of all time.

Jens was great at time trailing when he rode for Ivan Basso and Team CSC that’s for sure, and yes he is the breakaway specialist of a generation, but those days have changed and now he renders relatively more central on the results sheet.

So why the hour record? That’s right, he rides for a team called Trek! Trek is making the most of Jen Voigt’s popularity here, and good on them, it’s genius.

I can imagine the marketing pitch already:

“So boss, Jens is like, super popular right? So, why don’t we pay him a whole bunch to do something really stupid? I mean come on, nobody will be able to not watch!”

All of a sudden there is a new Cervelo P3 in the market, a new Superman machine, and every spare-and-bored dollar interested in time trialling will be seeking the elusive bike that Voigt either did or did not beat the hour record on.

All Trek has to do now is advertise how far into the mega-hyper-distant future their technology is, and it won’t even matter if he falls short of the record, it’ll still be that bike. In fact, heisting that bike for later black-market dealings would be an intelligent investment of time on the cunning thief’s behalf.


So can Jens Voigt actually beat the record? Yawn, boring… I mean, would he even be trying if he wasn’t relatively sure that he could do it?

God knows how, but it’ll happen, or he’ll get close enough. In the next 10 years it’ll be broken again as well. Soon Fabian Cancellara and Tony Martin will have a crack too, which will see a surpassing of those previous beads of sweat and a new cornerstone in the room of mega-fast bikes.

With all this latest research in nutrient absorption, cadence variation and wattage monitoring, surely the time has come when science has caught up with the blunt-force doping of the past hour-records?

Ok maybe that’s being a little bit assuming. Maybe.