Even by the standards of a sport that requires enormous stamina and capacity for suffering, Jens Voigt is in a class on his own. Beloved by cycling fans for his madcap one-man breakaways as much as his sense of humour and quotable catchphrases, Jens is one of the most popular personalities in cycling.
Jens was born near Hamburg, and came up through the East German system before the Wall came down. He got into the national team through the German army, before signing for his first big team. In many ways he is cycling’s anti-star; despite arguably spending more time at the front of the Tour de France than any other rider he has only worn the yellow jersey twice as his efforts have always been in the service of others.
Jens embodies the best of cycling’s qualities – loyalty to his team, sacrifice, and devotion to the sport. He says, ‘I’m not a head person, I’m more of a heart and guts guy. That’s how I race.’ Shut Up Legs is a funny, insightful and entertaining look at the tough realities of professional cycling, told in Jens’s trademark irreverent and inimitable style.
Jens Voigt is a German former professional road bicycle racer for severalteams, the last one being UCI ProTeam Trek Factory Racing. Voigt competed in the Tour de France a record-tying 17 times and twice wore its famed yellow jersey, though he never challenged to capture the overall title. His career achievements include winning the critérium International a record-tying 5 times and a number of one-week stageraces, as well as two Tour de France stage victories. In September 2014, he set a new hour record. He lives in Berlin.
Co-author James Startt is a sports journalist who has followed the Tour de France for over twenty years. His Tour reports are published in Bicycling Magazine and other cycling publications. He has worked closely with Jens Voigt for three years on his blogs and columns. He lives in Paris.