Miss Bike to Work 2020: 12,915 km commuting by bike!
Last year employees enrolled in Bike to Work cycled an impressive total of 4,5 million kilometres. Inge Quartier of VF Europe was selected as Miss Bike to Work; she covered a good 12,915 kilometers whilst commuting.
From spinning to racing
Inge didn’t start from scratch when she decided to cover her daily commute by bike. Her trajectory spans from Gent to Sint-Niklaas which means that she cycles around 90 kilometers a day. But she already was quite the queen of the saddle. Several years ago she took a course to become a spinning instructor. Once she was overseeing a class of avid cyclists who were used to racing. They were surprised by her energy and force. “They told me “wow, your class is really intense!” and they then offered me to ride along with them sometime.” That’s how she learned techniques to take to the road, they taught her to take up space and to really go for it. Now she intentionally chooses her work so it is at least 50 kilometers from her home. She really wouldn’t miss a commute like that for the world.
Granted, her mornings start early. Inge rises in the small hours so she can leave the house by five and to jump on her racing bike to get to work. The rhythm of her favorite music blasting through one earbud she puts in accompanies her as she pedals to Sint-Niklaas. “It’s such a great feeling, being free of traffic, the feeling of the tires on the asphalt gives me a sense of pure calm that I cannot compare to anything else.” When she gets to work her head feels clear and she feels fresh and ready to start her day. And though the way back home can be tough, she wouldn’t want to miss it. She feels great, both physically and mentally, when she cycles a lot.
VF Europe is proud that Inge has logged such an impressive mileage. As a client at Bike to Work they stimulate their employees to come in by bike. Inge has several colleagues that take their racing bike during the summer, but the cycling culture still has plenty of room to grow among her co-workers. In the meantime the employer has installed better infrastructure to store bicycles, and they now also offer pumps and stations to charge batteries of e-bikes. For these past few months Inge has been using an e-bike. She still hasn’t completely recovered after contracting Covid-19 this past December. As a part of her revalidation she keeps on cycling, now with the extra support of an e-bike. But she prefers her racing bike. As soon as she can, this tough lady will click her shoes back into that racing bike and roar across the asphalt towards Sint-Niklaas once again.