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Tour de France cyclist Jonas Abrahamsen gains 20kg to become king of the mountain leader

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In short:

Tour de France cyclist Jonas Abrahamsen gained 20kg and subsequently gained 6cm in height after under eating earlier in his career

Abrahamsen leads the king of the mountains classification at this year’s Tour de France after seven stages.

What’s next?

There are five classified climbs on Stage 8 of the race for riders to earn points for the polka dot jersey.

Jonas Abrahamsen is a name that probably wont resonate with many sports fans in Australia.

Viewers of the first week of the Tour de France will not have been able to avoid seeing the 28-year-old Norwegian though.

Since finishing second on stage two, Abrahamsen has been front and centre on every stage, wearing the green jersey for the opening four stages and, currently, the polka dot jersey.

That a 78kg, 183cm-tall rider should be wearing the jersey commonly associated with the super-light mountain goats in the first week of a grand tour is, in itself, not unusual.

Early breakaways and hunting point bonuses over the smaller climbs means the early stages often see a wildcard take that particular prize early in the race.

Jonas Abrahamsen shakes hands with Tadej Pogacar

Jonas Abrahamsen (left) has relished being at the front of the race alongside genuine mountaineers like overall race leader, Tadej Pogačar.(AP Photo: Jerome Delay)

However, Abrahamsen’s recent success comes amidst a backdrop of under eating that resulted in delayed puberty.

As a younger rider, Abrahamsen was obsessed with being as light as possible.

That again, is not uncommon in cycling, where Watts per kilo — the amount of power a rider can produce in relation to their weight — is the overriding statistic.

Abrahamsen though, took it to a whole new level.

“It was crazy,” Abrahamsen told The Cycling Podcast. “My body was completely different.” 

Inspired by riders such as four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome, Abrahamsen endeavoured to be as skinny as possible, dropping to as low as 60kg.

Froome, who at 186cm is slightly taller than Abrahamsen, is listed as being 68kg. Defending two-time champion Jonas Vingegaard weighs 60kg but is just 174cm tall.

Chris Froome rides uphill in the yellow jersey

Four-time champion Chris Froome is one of Jonas Abrahamsen’s idols, but had a very different body type.(Getty Images: Doug Pensinger)

“When I started cycling it was very popular to be very skinny,” Abrahamsen added in that interview with The Cycling Podcast.

“All my favourite riders were very skinny and I was looking up to them.



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