Greatest male RAAM champion in history and quite possibly the world’s greatest ultra-distance endurance athlete in any sport. Wins almost every ultra cycling race he enters. Renowned for pushing himself to the edge of mental breakdown during races. Full-time ultra-distance cyclist and member of the Slovenian armed forces.
Having begun his love affair with RAAM in 2003, he was the most experienced racer in the field by far. At the time, this 45-year-old Slovenian Special Forces soldier was the only man ever to win five solo championships. Robič is the Lance Armstrong of RAAM and a legend in his own right. Some call him the best endurance athlete in the world, and even well into his forties he still wins most of the ultra-distance cycling races he enters.
Robič’s dedication to this race is a full-bore obsession. “I love RAAM,” he explained. “Something inside this race, it’s unique. It gets like a poison into you. It’s the greatest and the toughest. It takes all your life. It takes everything.”
Jure Robič was a good-looking man of medium height and build, with a large, weathered face; a prominent, square chin; and an easy smile that’s contagiously playful. When he’s sporting a thick stubble after a few days on the bike, he looks like the Marlboro Man. We all know dashing guys like this—the ones who wear black turtlenecks, faded designer jeans, and trendy eyeglasses. He’s easy to look at and attracts people like a magnet.
The first impression this ruggedly-handsome champion gave was of a venerable, dangerous warrior. The way he carried himself; the crinkles in his forehead; the rippling musculature of his potent legs. These were all signs of the mythic weight of his suffering and of how hard this man struggles to prove his worthiness. You could see all of this if you looked closely enough, opening yourself to his human complexities and yearnings.
from "HELL ON TWO WHEELS" by Amy Snyder