Chennai: John Kennedy is the first rider in the country to complete a distance 1,200km Brevet des Randonneurs Mondiaux (BRM) with a Fat Boy, a bike that weighs more than 25kg with all its accessories. John quit his profession as the sub inspector after serving the Tamil Nadu police for 32 years. John being quite the articulate one, shared his reason for developing an interest in cycling and quitting his police service. 

John said, “My last posting was at Raj Bhavan and to be honest, I had an eventful journey in my career as a cop. But somewhere in between, I had a strong feeling to quit the profession and do something else. Like any other individual, I too wasn’t sure what exactly to pursue. During that time, I came across one of my friend’s cycles. I took it for a ride on East Coast Road (ECR) in Chennai and the rest is history!”

John's desire to represent his country in International cycling tournaments made him quit his profession. He joined one of the groups in his locality, where he started his training; he stated that there is no lack of cycling groups in "namma ooru". He first started off with a normal mountain bike, also called the MTB cycle. He said, “I came across this cycle called Fat Boy that weighs more than 25 kg. Usually, cyclists prefer ones that are lighter in weight for a smooth ride. But I wanted to experience an adrenaline rush and moreover, it was love at first sight when I saw the Fat Boy.”

The former cop became the first Indian to complete 1,200 km with a 6853 m elevation within 90 hours on a Fat Boy by participating in the BRM cycling event. John said, “Brevet is a long-distance, free-paced cycling event, where the rider can ride at his/her own pace. Before this, I had participated in an audax event (in which participants attempt to cycle long distances, 200 km-500km within a pre-defined time limit, and became the winner.”

John is now prepping for a 1,250km event in Paris to become the winner. Like in other cities, there is a growing awareness about cycling here in Chennai too, he said, adding, "During my free time, I want to encourage cycling among youngsters and adults.”