A cyclist who sacrifices their own race ambitions to help their team or leader.
Example usage: 'John has been riding as a domestique for his team leader all season.'
Most used in: Professional cycling and endurance events.
Most used by: Professional cyclists, amateur racers, and competitive cyclists.
Comedy Value: 2/10
What is Domestique Cycling?
Domestique cycling is an important cycling term used to describe a type of rider who supports their team and leader, often sacrificing their own race results to do so. The term comes from the French word domestique, which means servant or helper.
In the context of professional cycling, domestiques are typically strong riders who are tasked with helping their team leader achieve their race objectives. This may involve setting a pace at the front of the group, blocking the wind for the leader, or helping the leader chase down breakaways. Domestiques may also be used to help protect the leader from rivals or to deliver food and drinks.
Because of the selfless and often thankless work they do, domestiques are considered the backbone of any cycling team. In fact, some studies have shown that having an experienced domestique can increase a team leader’s chances of success by up to 20%.
For the domestiques themselves, the rewards are often not financial. Instead, they are motivated by the challenge of helping their team and leader succeed, as well as the camaraderie and friendship that comes from being part of a successful team.
The Origin of the Term 'Domestique Cycling'
The term 'domestique cycling' is a French term derived from the word 'domestique', which means 'servant' or 'helper'. The term was first used in the early 1900s in France as a way to describe cyclists who were helping other riders, typically by providing a windbreak or pacing them up a steep climb.
The term was first used in the Tour de France in 1903, when the race organizer Henri Desgrange used it to describe the riders who were helping the leader of the race, Maurice Garin, to win the race. The term was then adopted by the cycling community and has been used ever since to describe riders who are supporting their teammates.
Today, domestique cycling is still widely used in professional cycling, with riders taking on the role of 'domestique' to help their team leader achieve victory. The domestique riders are often given the task of providing a windbreak, setting a fast pace, fetching food and water, and even giving up their own bike if their team leader has a mechanical issue.
The term 'domestique cycling' has become a part of the cycling lexicon and is now used around the world to describe riders who are sacrificing their own performance in order to help their teammate or team leader achieve success.