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A never-ending obsession to succeed

Channelling a fierce determination to succeed, cycling champion Robbie McEwen rose through the ranks to win over a hundred professional races and three Tour de France green jerseys.

“To become an elite athlete, it’s got to be an obsession - the only thing you think about from the moment you wake up to the moment you go to sleep,” says McEwen.

“When I was a young athlete, I set goals along the way, and my big goal in front of me was to get to the Tour de France and win stages.”

McEwen certainly achieved this, going on to win 12 Tour de France stages and three green sprinter’s jerseys, in the process becoming one of the most successful road cyclists of the last 20 years.

However, for many cycling fans, his greatest moment came in the 2007 Tour with a victorious sprint on stage 1 to Canterbury.

The stage win was seen as remarkable as McEwen had crashed with 20 kilometres to go. He injured his knee and wrist but, with the help of his team, he clawed his way back to the bunch to win the sprint by over a bike length.

“When you’re out there pushing through in a situation when it’s really tough, you do feel alone, but that’s where your support network kicks in,“ says McEwen, acknowledging the power of working together for the same goal.

When you’re out there pushing through in a situation when it’s really tough, you do feel alone, but that’s where your support network kicks in.

McEwen raced as a professional from 1996, retiring from the World Tour after riding the 2012 Tour of California. He lives in Australia with his wife Angelique Pattyn, his son Ewan, and his daughters Elena and Claudia.

Ensuring that his vast experience is shared with the next generation, McEwen remains a leading voice in today’s international cycling community, fronting the global English commentary for the Tour de France and calling the race from start to finish for some 50 countries worldwide.

“My commentary career is something I really enjoy, sharing my knowledge and enthusiasm for the sport. I think it’s really important to give back to the next generation, giving advice, and mentoring younger riders.

“I’d like to think that in a small way it helps them reach the next stage of their career,” says McEwen.

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