MIMA

monitors, analyzes and corrects media reporting errors and bias concerning messengers and couriers.

 

Messenger Institute
 for Media Accuracy

 


 

 

 

Bike messenger pedals to medal in World race

 

Boston Globe, July 11, 2004

 

By Joe Berkeley

 

Adam Ford, the fastest bicycle messenger on Earth in 2003, had to settle for a new title this year: fastest bicycle messenger in NorthAmerica.

 

Ford, a South End resident, finished third overall in both the sprint and the main race behind competitors from Switzerland and Denmark, in the 2004 Messenger World Championship held July 1-5 in Edmonton, Alberta.

 

The competition featured some 150 couriers from all over the globe, including the United States, Canada, Australia, Japan, France, Spain, and Canada. Ford was looking to defend his first-place finishes in last year's sprint, a 250-meter test of raw speed, and the main race, a longer event held on open roads.

 

Chilly temperatures and torrential downpours made the riding treacherous, said Ford.

 

''After two days of rain, half the course was under water," he said.

 

Many riders couldn't see the submerged ruts in the road and potholes. Some got off easy with a flat tire.

 

Others -- according to Ford as many as 10 percent of the field --crashed out of the race.

 

While the weather was harsh, the citizens of Edmonton were welcoming,according to Ford.

 

''When I was riding around the city the first few days getting oriented, whenever I'd pull over and pull out a map someone would stop and ask me if I needed any help," he said.

 

To train for the Worlds, Ford rode his bicycle every day, first on long training rides in the morning, and again in the afternoon as a courier for RS Express in Boston. Last year, he logged 20,000 training miles.

 

As far as words of wisdom for the casual urban cyclist, perhaps riding a mile from apartment to coffee shop, Ford said, ''as always, vigilance is the key to safety in riding in Boston. And wearing a helmet is absolutely imperative."

 

 


 

 

 

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