Thirty years of pedal power honoured

AGED 50, Geoff Stoker has proved he is a master on two wheels.

Last Friday night at the Australian Cyclist of the Year Awards, the Parramatta resident was named Masters Cyclist of the Year.

It’s a feat that hasn’t come easily.

‘‘In a week we do something like 250 kilometres on the road and three, four-hour track sessions,’’ he said.

‘‘And there’s also three gym sessions that total six hours a week, too.

‘‘It doesn’t give you much time to do anything else.’’

This year at the world championships in Manchester, Stoker, the owner of Parramatta bike store, the Bike Barn, took out the time trial, sprint and team sprint with teammates Gavin White and Chris Murray.

He has already started to make plans for a second straight world title campaign.

‘‘Everybody wants to have that rainbow jersey when you win the world cup,’’ he said.

‘‘After 20 minutes of celebrating [in Manchester] I started to think to myself how we could improve.’’

It’s that competitive edge that motivates the  Parramatta Cycling Club life member to rise at 6.30am on his day off for a gruelling ride.

And should a day come when he loses that passion, the world’s fastest 50-year-old cyclist will know what to do.

‘‘The day I don’t feel like doing it any more, I won’t do it any more,’’ he said.

‘‘But I like to go fast, I like the speed, I like the company, I like the results and I like to stay fit.

‘‘You don’t get injured like runners or bashed to death like you do in footy and that’s why there are still guys racing who are 70 years old.’’

Stoker, involved with the sport for more than 30 years, has seen the impact of technology.

‘‘With the improvements I go as fast at 50 as I did when I was 25,’’ he said.

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