Mark Duroy has been with the team since it’s inception in California. When I went to work at Specialized, I was shocked by the speeds of the daily lunch ride. It was a full-on road race at sub 3K to go speeds with national and world champion caliber racers that happened to be my coworkers at the time. As I was being crushed, physically and mentally there was one person who went out of his way to pull me along on the hardest days and on the days when it just got too hard, slow down and pedal-in at a more enjoyable pace. This guy was Mark Duroy.
For those of you that don’t know, when mark was younger he raced at the highest level of junior racing and spent some time bouncing around from professional outfit to professional outfit, eventually landing himself in Europe. The guy has experience. His legs have been hurt by top-notch guys like George Hincapie and a close-personal hero of mine Chad Gerlach (I casted him on an episode of Intervention).
When you look at Mark, the first thing people notice is his height. Sure, he stand about as tall as I do but the guy seems a bit larger than life even alongside his usually quiet personality. His legs are huge and have muscles in places most people don’t have muscles. Then you’ll notice how low his position is on the bike. Flat-back doesn’t begin to describe it.
Mark has power for days and I’ve been lucky enough to hop in a few breaks with him and experience his draft/wrath first hand.
Two years ago, Mark broke his leg. Pretty bad. Dealing with the healing and trying to get through his MBA Big Mark was put out of commission. There were some complications latter in the healing processes that were quite scary for him. Nerve damage. Gnarly. Mark gained 65lbs, gnarlier. Luckily, after visiting some specialists at Stanford this past July he was feeling better and was finally able to get back on the bike.
Fast-forward to this September, 55lbs later; Mark decided to hop into his first race in nearly three years. A Pro/1/2 event called The Sacramento Grand Prix. The SGP is a heavily contested event by the majority of California’s fastest pros. Every contender enters this race after a full season of fast road and crit racing. Some of them arrive with stage race experience in their legs. I can’t imagine how hard it was for Mark to line up after a virtual complete hibernation away from the bike. Away from the race. Away from the pain.
Mark finished in the field that Rahsaan Bahati bested that day. I can’t imagine how difficult a feat that was. It speaks milestones for Marks character and strength as a rider and man.
I am proud to say Mark will be lining up as a fellow KindHuman Sports racer, #GettingRad at every opportunity. Everyone, give him a warm welcome back to the team and back to the scene.