Michael Rogers was on course to win the 2002 Tour Down Under … until disaster struck.
Known as ‘the Dodger,’ Rogers suffered a serious mechanical during the race. Upset, he threw his bike to the ground, clearly thinking he was sure to lose significant time.
But the simple call of “Michael,” saved the day and overall victory of the 2002 Tour Down Under.
Roadside fan Adam Pyke happened to be in the right place at the right time and even had the right sized bike on hand.
He gave Rogers his Colnago, the same as the discarded team bike, with the same cleats. Rogers took of with gusto, caught the bunch, had the seat height adjusted by a mechanic in the team car and ultimately gained three extra seconds by winning the next sprint points.
“What could have been a disaster turned out totally triumphant for Rogers and he’s now the leader of the Tour,” commentator Phil Liggett said at the time.
“Maybe it was destiny that got me to the finish,” said Rogers after the stage. “I was lucky Adam was there.” Adam Pyke, the owner of the bike, said he knew that Michael was in the overall lead from the previous day.
“I thought, ‘well if there’s a chance to give him a hand then why not’,” he added.