When we watch an elite endurance competition like the Tour de France, it’s easy to get caught up in the drama of moments that generate headlines—particularly the gnarly crashes that send riders slamming into the pavement. But while a crash is undeniably painful, the most agonizing part of professional biking is almost always the pedaling. If don’t believe that, talk to any racer who has dared to pursue the hour record—the longest distance cycled in an hour. In this favorite from our archives, we bring you the story of Italian cyclist Vittoria Bussi’s excruciating quest to make history, and how the ordeal forced her to transform her relationship with pain.
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