It was his home town, Calvados in Normandy, France, and when Jerome Ameline, Cayman’s Cycling Champion, (winner of Cayman’s 58-mile Championships) recently went there for a 2-week holiday with his family, he just happened to find out there was going to be a big, 66-cyclist race taking place there, which he joined right at the last minute. And then he just happened to win that, too.
“I noticed on social media that it was a bicycle race scheduled in the village where i grew up in Calvados, Normandy, and I contacted quickly my old cycling club in France where i used to race and they told me that I could do the race with a special ‘Day Pass,’ and all I needed would be a doctor’s certificate,” Mr. Ameline explained. Luckily, he already had his trusty bike with him: “The race was the following day i arrived in France, and after putting my bike together from my travelling box. It was a short circuit race, with 10 laps of 4 miles each.
“The start was more than very fast, and sometimes my speed exceeded 35 miles an hour,” he said. “After a few minutes, I thought i would not be making it to the end and it took me two full laps to settle down and get more comfortable. I usually try to escape from the pack to avoid a final sprint, as sprinting is not my strength, but the pace was so high and also with strong wind, I decided to just stay inside the peloton trying to save energy,” he said. It was in the very last stretch that he decided to pull out all the stops and get ahead of the pack:
“I made a brutal acceleration, taking the last corner in second position and then managed to pass the line in first place. I was not expecting such a good result, especially being jet lagged and not being used to riding in a large peloton anymore.
“I was wearing my Cayman Champion Jersey and it felt good to represent Cayman now my new home, back in my original home country.”
How did he celebrate? Well, by cycling 700 miles all around the Cognac region, with his sister, who loves cycling too.
Mr. Ameline grew up around cycles and cycling, and loves anything to do with cycling. He presently owns Revolutions Indoor Cycling at the Barnett Building George Town where he is a spinning instructor. Although he has tried out several different sports, including rowing and boxing, he always comes back to cycling. His very first race was more than 31 years ago, when he was just 13, and he has loved the sport ever since. This year he has been training very hard, and recently finished a training session at high altitude, in Colorado. He would love to see the sport take off here in Cayman and feels there are many benefits of getting involved. It is a low-impact sport, and so is just right for people who cannot run because of injury or strain to their joints. Like many serious cyclists he would very much like to see a proper racing track for cyclists to use.