You might think the life of a professional cyclist is glamorous – and you might be wrong. The last rider to bring home this point is the young Belgian climber, Steff Cras.
Cras lined up at the Vuelta a España as he has done twice before, hoping to fight for his struggling Lotto-Soudal side in the fight against relegation. It was not to be. On Stage 2, before the race even reached Spain, he crashed, leaving the race with a fractured elbow, fractured scaphoid and fractured finger. It was an inglorious end to his three years with Lotto-Soudal, an early start to his off-season and something to look back on for his next stint with Team TotalEnergies.
An even less glamorous chain of events was to come, however. After a season spent covering thousands of kilometres, making steady progress and perfecting his craft, Steff Cras was about to come up against RyanAir in its most freakishly cruel moments.
You’ve probably heard of RyanAir, Ireland’s ultra-low budget airline very good on social media, and slightly worse at transporting passengers comfortably from A to B. We don’t know where Steff Cras was going or returning using their service, but we do know that it didn’t go well. Like many before him, Cras used his social media presence (Twitter: 2,613 followers; Instagram: 4,331 followers) to express his displeasure:
To be fair, it looks like a harrowing journey, but with the distance removed, I think some aspects of the journey actually seem a bit funny. I mean I would be pissed if I expected to land in Melbourne and instead had to take a bus from Perth but I think at some point you would consider it part of the rich tapestry of life , You know?
I’m also intrigued by item #3 on Steff Cras’ shitlist – ‘barely food’. A foam? A sorbet? A wafer ? We are probably the closest to grasping the cause of the all caps missive with this point. Steff Cras – an off-season professional cyclist with a number of broken bones – was probably a bit hungry.
At the time of this writing, RyanAir has not responded to Steff Cras, but I think I can speak for all of us in wishing they would. I want to know more about this escape from hell. I want to know where it landed, and where it was originally supposed to land. I want a detailed rundown of what was on the refreshment cart. I want to know more about bus chaos.
In fact, I won’t even stop there. I want Benoît Cosnefroy to have an annoying time on Easyjet. I want Juraj Sagan to lose a wheel from his suitcase en route to Tenerife. I want Mathieu Burgaudeau sent to the wrong door. Then I want them all to tell the world about it with caps lock on. It’s the little off-season dramas I crave.