Mountain bike endurance specialist Tinker Juarez was robbed at gunpoint of his road bike and cell phone a couple of weeks ago, according to sources at his sponsor Cannondale.
Juarez, 43, the reigning US 24 Hours of Adrenalin champion and one of the most popular riders on the cross-country circuit for his longevity as a pro and friendliness, was riding one of his usual training loops from his Downey, California home. His route included a stretch of the bike path alongside the concrete-paved Los Angeles River. "A work-crew was re-paving a section and had put a detour that sent you on to the city streets," Juarez explained. Unfortunately, those city streets were in one of the roughest areas of North Long Beach. "I had stopped at this park for minute to get water, figure out how to continue my ride, and to change the music in my Walkman, when I felt a tap on my shoulder." Juarez turned to see a gun pointed at his face. The gunman demanded Juarez's Cannondale Six13road bike and his cell phone.
"I don't think the guy has any idea of what he has," Juarez observed, "When he rode off you could see he didn't know how to ride it - he wobbled off with it still in a big gear." Juarez surmises that his $5800 bike was "probably traded for a $50 bag of whatever."
Can happen to anyone