Pioneer Florian Noordman about his #RoadToBEAT
This morning I drove by a historic place in cycling history: the place where Eddy Merckx, Hennie Kuiper, Tom Boonen and Fabian Cancellara raised their hands to celebrate victory in the Tour of Flanders. Not only them, but every year thousands of cyclists ride their own Tour of Flanders, following the professionals, just like I do. Today the finish of the Tour of Flanders is in Oudenaarde, but passing this historic location reminded me of the emotion and the passion that cycling brings to a lot of people who love this sport.
This emotion and passion are what got me interested in cycling. Let me take you back to the Tour de France of 1990, when I was 6 years old: Dutch riders won six stages (including one team victory by Panasonic) and Erik Breukink came third in the general classification. The rider who came in 10th that year was Miguel Indurain, well known for winning five consecutive editions of the Tour de France from 1991 on.
The fans, the cheering, the rivalries: this is what makes cycling a great sport. In no other sport are there more legendary courses than in cycling. It is this love for cycling that triggered my decision to become a pioneer of BEAT. Even though I live in Luxembourg, I follow cycling news from around the world and I heard about this initiative to start a professional cycling club that aims to participate in the professional competition in 2018. Although the latter is attractive, it wasn’t the thing that convinced me; it was actually the club part that intrigued me. A club comes (in contrast to the cycling teams based on a sponsor model) with its own identity.
Year after year you see sponsors come and go, and every year it’s the same old story of getting used to new jerseys. In addition, fans are often not taken into consideration. Yes, team days are organized, but who can say that he or she is really part of a cycling team? This is exactly what BEAT Cycling Club stands for: a club for and by its members and fans. Drawing on my background in project management, this is what I would like to help BEAT with: creating and expanding the fan base and literally creating the club identity, providing input when needed, and achieving sustainable change within cycling, but, above all, bringing passion and emotion back to the sport.
To all passionate cyclists out there: come and join us. Give us your support, and let’s make 2017 a great year in cycling history!