When I retired from the Commission in 1999 I discovered my passion for long trip biking tours. Throughout my professional life with two more-or-less full time jobs, I had hardly any time for sport. This changed suddenly after my retirement. Having no daily agenda full of appointments and obligations I suddenly had ample time to make these long biking tours. As I have always been somebody looking to stretch his limits I started straightaway with a three week biking tour to Santiago de Compostela in Spain. What most impressed me during this first tour was the feeling of freedom. Starting early in the morning on a well-defined route, but not knowing where to land at the end of the day, was a totally new sensation for me. One day I may have biked 180-190 kms and the next day only 125-130 kms, but nobody cared.

I like biking because apart from the physical exertion it allows to relax the spirit and to get away from the daily stress. It also gives a great opportunity to absorb the beauty of the landscape, to smell the flowers, to admire the trees and plants in the field and to listen to the many birds. It also allows for meeting interesting people, especially when you bike solo as I do.

Over the years I made the following biking tours:

1999 Brussels-Santiago de Compostela (Spain) 2.349 km
2000 Brussels-Rome and Athens 2.934 km
2001 Brussels- Gibraltar and Sevilla 3.073 km
2002 Brussels-Budapest-Ljubljana-Venice-Brussels 3.870 km
2003 100 Cols Tour in France 4.100 km
2005 100 Cols Tour in France for the 2nd time 4.100 km
2008 Brussels-Prague 1.350 km
2009 part of 100 Cols Tour in France    950 km
2011 tour in the Netherlands    850 km

The Hundred Cols Tour in France is known as the most exciting challenge a cyclist can undertake. The 4.100 km of the Hundred Cols Tour comprise 106 cols and 67 “côtes” (other steep ascents), and are all situated in France . All the grand cols of the Tour de France are included in this tour, notably the Puy Marie, Marie Blanque, Aubisque, Tourmalet, Mont Ventoux, Couillole, la Bonnette, Iséran and the Grand Colombier to name but a few. The majority of the cols are between 7% and 12% on average, but some slopes are going up to 18%.