Tom Gee sets new American cycling record!!
Justin Lowe Complets PBP in First Attempt!!
August 16 – 20
Tom Gee of Paris successfully finished the 1,200-kilometer Paris-Brest-Paris bicycle race in Paris, France, Aug. 20 in a time of 73 hours and 12 minutes.
This was the eighth time Gee has finished the event. That is a new record for U.S. riders in the 124-year history of the event.
Gee competed in France along with Justin Lowe of Stewart County. Lowe became a first-time finisher or “ancien” of the event.
Four Tennessee riders started the event and Gee and Lowe were the only ones to finish within the 90-hour time limit for the event.
Over all, only about 70 percent of the 6,000 starters of the event finished within the time limit.
Paris-Brest-Paris is the premier long-distance cycling event in the world and is only held every four years since its start in 1891.
It is the oldest cycling event in the world and was the forerunner to the Tour de France.
Originally a professional bicycle race, it is now an amateur-only event which stresses the same self-sufficiency required of riders in the 1890s.
Riders buy supplies anywhere along the course, but support from motorized vehicles is prohibited except at checkpoints.
There is a 90-hour time limit and the clock runs continuously. Participants ride through the night and sleep as little as possible, sometimes catching a few minutes beside the road before continuing.
Finishing the event and having their name entered into the “Great Book of Anciens” of Paris-Brest-Paris is considered a great honor for a cyclist.
Gee and Lowe are teammates on the Hub City/Lift Center Cycling team out of Jackson. Both are current Tennessee State Cycling Champions in their respective age groups.
Gee is the administrator of Henry County Medical Center in Paris.