Meet the riders: Sofie De Clercq

A few years back, I gave up singlehanded sailing on a boat which, thinking back on today, was ridiculously small. The sailing adventure had started to swallow much more time, effort and money than I could afford and it was time to change something in my way of life.

By chance I discovered that cycling was perfect to fill in the void left by my giving up sailing. Every time I pedal in the rain or the dark, I am reminded of the exhilaration I used to feel at sea, clipped on in a tiny, open cockpit, brutally exposed to the elements.

I began to read Jesko’s messages while he was racing the Transatlantic Way. Completely captivated I started foĺlowing other races and also Jesko’s rides on Strava while he was preparing the first Taunus route. All those photos kept working their magic on me.

This will be my first bikepacking event and I’m thrilled to bits to have a starting spot on the Taunus. I’m giving it my all to prepare properly, but as a slightly overweight 54 year old, I’m not having too many illusions as to my cycling speed and daily distance. Since the severe lockdown in France has been relaxed, it’s been fantastic to find the freedom of riding again. 

I’m very lucky to live in the Vosges. Once in a while I grab my bike and climb to a nice spot in the forest to spend the night outside. It’s wonderful to make plans again and I think the summer will be great. 

I’m looking forward to meeting you all in Hofheim !