Paul Sherwen

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Paul Sherwen
Paul Sherwen 3.jpg
Personal information
Full name William Paul Sherwen
Born (1956-06-07) 7 June 1956 (age 58)
 England
 United Kingdom
Team information
Discipline Road
Role Rider
Rider type Domestique
Amateur team(s)
1977 ACBB
Professional team(s)
1978–1979
1980–1983
1984
1985
1986
1987
Fiat - La France
La Redoute - Motobecane
La Redoute
La Redoute - Cycles MBK
Raleigh - Weinmann
Raleigh - Banana
Major wins
British National Road Race Champion
Infobox last updated on
20 December 2007

Paul Sherwen (born 7 June 1956)[1][2] is an English former professional racing cyclist. He is now a broadcaster on cycling, notably the Tour de France. He raced in seven editions of the Tour, finishing five, and gained a reputation for his ability to suffer over long mountain stages.

Cycling career[edit]

Born in Widnes, Cheshire, Sherwen was brought up in Kenya. He started his sporting life as a swimmer, finishing second in the under-14 Kenyan swimming championship. Upon returning to Britain, he won the regional under-18 championship for Runcorn and District. However, at 16, he turned to cycling and rode for the Weaver Valley CC in Cheshire, receiving guidance from Manchester coach Harold Nelson and trained regularly with other local riders destined for professional careers, notably Graham Jones, John Herety and Ian Binder.

At 19, riding for Altrincham Road Club, he won the season-long Star Trophy series in 1976, winning the Manx International and the Archer Pernod GP and two stages in the Tour of Malago.

A year later, he won Folkestone-London, attacking from the gun. For the French team ACBB (Athletic Club Boulogne Billancourt) he won Paris-Barentin, Paris-Mauberge and the Tour de l'Essone, was third in the amateur Paris–Roubaix and second in the British championship. He won the Archer Grand Prix cycle race in 1976 and 1977. Despite spending only part of the year in France due to examinations, he came second in the season-long Palme d'Or competition. 1977 saw him ride the world championship in Venezuela, the pro-am Étoile des Éspoirs and the Scottish Milk Race.

In 1978 he turned professional for Fiat under Raphaël Géminiani, and later rode as a domestique in the La Redoute cycling team.

He finished 70th in the 1978 Tour de France. In 1980, he came close to being eliminated on the third stage of the Tour. He finished outside the cut-off time (a percentage of the winner’s time), but was reinstated in view of his solo chase after a crash. The reinstatement delayed abandonment, and he was to repeat the process six years later.

Sherwen was 20th and 11th in Milan – San Remo in 1979 and 1980 respectively, and 15th in the 1984 Paris–Roubaix. He finished third in the Tour du Haut-Var, won by Sean Kelly, in 1982, following a stage win in the season-opening Tour of the Mediterranean. He came second in the Four Days of Dunkirk in 1983, winning a stage. He won the Grand Prix de Denain.

In the Tour, Sherwen finished 111th in 1982 and 116th in 1984. During the last mountain stage of 1984, he diced with the cut-off time. Riding with Australian cyclist Allan Peiper towards the summit at La Plagne, Peiper was knocked from his bike by a Dutch enthusiast. Sherwen – aware of the cut-off – told him to get back on his bike and they crossed the line just inside the limit.

1985 tour[edit]

On the first day in the mountains of the 1985 Tour de France, Sherwen crashed in the first kilometre before the race had left Epinal. With Bernard Hinault setting a fast pace, Sherwen had little chance to regain the other riders. He rode solo for six hours over six mountains, accompanied by a motorcycle outrider, and was over an hour behind the stage winner, and 23 minutes outside the cut-off – the Tour publicity caravan had started its return journey and had to move to one side to allow Sherwen to complete the stage. However, again, his courage and endurance were rewarded by reinstatement – he did continue and went on to finish this Tour which would be his last.

Sherwen joined Raleigh in 1986 alongside Mark Bell, Paul Watson, Jon Clay and Jeff Williams. He retired after two seasons winning the British road race championship in 1987 his final season. He then managed the Banana-Raleigh team until Raleigh pulled out at the end of 1989. During this time, he worked as a co-commentator with Phil Liggett for Channel 4's coverage of the Tour de France. After Banana-Raleigh, Sherwen worked as the Public Relations Director for the American Motorola Cycling Team.[3]

Today[edit]

During the Tour de France, Sherwen commentates for ITV, Australia's SBS Network and the United States' NBC Sports with Phil Liggett. Sherwen lives in Kampala, Uganda where he has interests in a gold mine, commuting between Uganda and the United States regularly.[4]

Palmarès[edit]

1976
1st Archer Grand Prix
1st Premier Calendar
1977
2nd British National Road Race Championships (Amateur)
2nd Premier Calendar
1st Archer Grand Prix
3rd in GP de France
3rd in Paris-Roubaix Espoirs
1980
3rd in Aix-en-Provence
3rd in Stage 2 Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré
3rd in Stage 3 Ronde van België, Brussel
1981
2nd in Gistel
2nd in San Sebastian
3rd in San Sebastian (b)
1st in Tour du Hainaut Occidentale
1982
1st in Stage 1 Tour Méditerranéen, Béziers
3rd in Stage 5 part b Tour Méditerranéen, Monaco
3rd in Tour du Haut-Var, Seillans
3rd in Ruiselede
1983
1st in GP de Denain
1st in San Sebastian (b)
1st in Stage 3 Quatre jours de Dunkerque, Saint Quentin
2nd in General Classification Quatre jours de Dunkerque
2nd in Stage 3 Driedaagse van De Panne, De Panne
3rd in Paris, Paris
1984
3rd in GP de Wallonie, Charleroi
1985
2nd in Clermont-Ferrand
2nd in Great Yarmouth
3rd in Stafford
3rd in Stage 1, Tour of Ireland, Wexford
3rd in Sint-Denijs
1986
1st British National Criterium Championships
13th in Stage 5, Tour of Ireland
23rd overall Tour of Ireland
1987
MaillotReinoUnido.PNG Winner of the British National Road Race Championships (Professional)
3rd in Stafford

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "Paul Sherwen Profile". cyclebase.nl. 
  2. ^ "Paul Sherwen Profile". cyclingwebsite.net. 
  3. ^ Abt, Samuel (1995-07-20). "Race Ignored, Procession Honors Rider". The New York Times. Retrieved 2014-07-14. 
  4. ^ Interview with Paul Sherwen, Cycling Weekly, April 15, 2008.

External links[edit]