Yoan Dercourt, our French ultra-cyclist, won The Hope 1000, a Swiss self-supported mountain bike race of 1000 kilometer, 30 000 meters of elevation gain, from Romanshorn to Montreux on the shores of Lake Geneva.
After 3 days, 20 hours and 36 minutes on a bike, in stifling heat of up to 45°C, Yoan Dercourt triumphantly reached the famous statue of Freddie Mercury, signaling the end of this crazy adventure. “The emotion was there, the tears wanted to come out, but I was so dried up that nothing emerged!”.
In the heart of the race
Like the Tour Divide in the US, the Hope 1000 is the first bikepacking event in Switzerland which imposes a major difficulty, in addition to the distance: self-support. It’s therefore without refueling and without mechanical support that Yoan will set off on the morning of June 18 alongside his friend Maxime.
“Preparing for this race and this start together will remain a unique moment of sharing with a good dose of excitement and apprehension”.
The race got off to a difficult start for Yoan because of the oppressive heat which greatly weakened him physically. Hot temperatures and unbreathable air: 38°C at 1400 meters above sea level and up to 45°C on the plain. He persists and moves forward as best he can, trying to manage hydration, diet, sleep, etc. After dozens of hours of struggle against himself, Yoan regains his strength and finds a rhythm that allows him to join Markus Hager in first position. With 200 km to go, the decisive overtaking and the triumphant ride to victory.
After more than 92 hours in the saddle, Yoan finally sees Montreux. His girlfriend is there to welcome him and take a picture of him, exhausted but happy, next to the famous statue of Freddie Mercury, an essential proof to send to the race organisers to validate his arrival.
Ride in UYN®
Dressed in UYN® for his training and previous races (including the Race Across Belgium he won last month), Yoan put his equipment to the test in maximum temperatures.
The French ultra-cyclist chose UYN® Racefast bib shorts and UYN® Wave shirt, developed in collaboration with the Cerism research institute of the University of Verona and made using Natex bio-fiber, 25% lighter and 50% faster drying than traditional synthetic fibers .
The UYN® Aero socks also accompanied him on the course: a lightweight model characterized by a three-dimensional structure that increases the aerodynamic coefficient by reducing air resistance.
“My favorite? The cycling shirt is just extra, so lightweight, breathable, comfortable and practical. Despite the heat, I never felt cramped; I almost forgot I was wearing it: there is no better proof of its effectiveness!”
After Hope 1000
Yoan resumed his work as a carpenter the next day. With a cumulative total of 6.5 hours of sleep, he admits to feeling very tired! The desire to ride again has not returned, especially as this reasonable sportsman has imposed a period of total rest on himself to be ready for his future objectives: a French road trip in the Pyrenees at the end of July with friend, then the BikingMan Aura, a race of 1000 kilometers and 19,500 meters of elevation gain through the French Rhône Alpes Auvergne region, starting on August 8 from Beaumont-les-valence. Without forgetting another major adventure: the arrival of his son at the end of August!