The Netherlands’s Leontien Zijlaard-van Moorsel apparently rode the final race of a glittering career, one of the greatest in women’s cycling history, on the tiny Dutch island of Curacao in the Caribbean last weekend.

Appropriately, the woman whose current world women’s hour record was a fast as the past men’s record set by the great five time TDF winner, Jacques Anquetil, was allowed to ride her final race with the men.

She duly obliged her legions of global fans with a stirring ride to 11th place behind Spanish triple world champion winner, Rabobank’s Oscar Freire.

Zijlaard-Van Moorsel has longed dreamed of riding in a men’s race, and she commented , "in a second life I would definitely want to come back as a man; the racing is so much nicer with the men and when they attack, the whole peloton is in a line riding at sixty kilometres per hour. It’s really super."
Prince Albert of Monaco, one of the most prominent members of the global sporting community, was at the post-race party in Curacao and paid a warm tribute to the queen of cycling, pointing out that she “will go down as one of the best athletes in history."