The 100th Tour de France Features Two Former Athletes from Lees-McRae, Currently in 18th and 87th Place

Published Friday, July 5, 2013 at 11:00 am

July 5, 2013. Lees-McRae is proud to support two former Bobcat cyclists at they ride in the Tour de France. Brent Bookwalter ’06 (BMC Racing) is making his third appearance in this historic race, while newcomer Andrew Talansky (Gramin Sharp) is making his first appearance. As of July 3, Bookwalter and Talansky are riding in 106th and 16th place, respectively.

During his time at Lees-McRae, Bookwalter studied Biology and won nine collegiate national titles for the Bobcats. He now resides in Asheville with his wife, fellow professional cyclist Jamie. Bookwalter has been a regular on the professional circuit since 2005 and rode for the winning Tour de France team in 2011. In addition to his many accolades, Bookwalter won the National Under-23 Time Trail Championships.

As a Bobcat, Talansky, who attended Lees-McRae from 2007 to 2008, won the criterium and the individual omnium at the 2008 Collegiate Road Nationals. Talansky was also interested in studying journalism, but maintained a clear focus on his career as a professional cyclist. That is proving to be a very successful venture for the young cyclist. In addition to riding in his first Tour de France and maintaining his place in the top 25, he has also claimed second place and was named Best Young Rider at Paris-Nice earlier this year. At only 24 years old, Talansky is in his third year as a professional cyclist. 

This is the 100th anniversary of the Tour de France, and amidst this 2,157 mile race, Bookwalter and Talansky are two of only six American riders. 

For more information about cycling at Lees-McRae College, please contact the Athletics Department at 828-898-8725. 

Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of western North Carolina, Lees-McRae College is a private, four-year college offering diverse baccalaureate degrees, strong athletic programs and outstanding faculty. With over 800 students from 39 states and territories and more than 10 foreign countries, Lees-McRae’s broad curriculum is enhanced by a field-specific career preparation and experiential learning with an emphasis on leadership and service. Fore more information please call 828-898-5241.

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