Will Routley Announces His Retirement
After a Successful Professional Career
Will Routley, one of the most dedicated and well-respected riders in the peloton, has called an end to his 12-year cycling career. In his time as a Professional, Routley took several high-profile victories, including the Canadian National Road title in 2010, a Stage and King of the Mountains at the 2014 Tour of California and a stunning sprint victory this year in Stage Two of the GP Liberty Seguros in Portugal on his way to second overall.
“I have thought about retiring a little bit every year I raced bikes, and was pretty much certain I would stop on a number of occasions,” said Routley. “I love the lifestyle, making sure you are healthy and feeling strong, well-rested and just going out and hammering the hell out of your body. I love that, but I am also wise after so many years of racing. I have no interest in getting hurt, and was starting to race cautiously the past couple of seasons. It is time to move on from racing and accomplish other goals.”
Routley started riding bikes at age 10 when his family moved to Whistler, B.C. It was there that he and his father discovered a passion for mountain biking. Routley stayed focused on mountain biking until making the switch to road racing at the age of 21. He made his Professional debut a couple of years later with the Canadian Symmetrics team alongside Rally Cycling staff Eric Wohlberg, Zach Bell and Jacob Erker, before spending two seasons each with Jelly Belly and SpiderTech C10. In 2013, Routley made the jump to Europe with the Belgian Accent Jobs-Wanty team. It wasn't until 2014 that he joined the Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies team, the precursor to Rally Cycling.
“I got to travel the world with guys who became my best friends,” said Routley. “There were so many experiences one couldn't get as a tourist. I drank tea with yak's milk on the Tibetan plateau after not finishing in a race in China. I lived in an ice-cold stone apartment in the Pyrenees in southern France. I rode up a volcano to a tiny village in El Salvador in the dark and in a cloud of diesel fumes and woodsmoke from people cooking on open fires. As a cyclist, one pretty much lives out of a suitcase, and I was very fortunate to have so much family time. Shoshauna was also racing and we didn't spend nearly as much time apart as other couples. Together, we have traveled and spent winters in California, Belgium, Spain and France. Off the bike, I am proud of how I became a voice for clean sport. I never had a problem with telling it like it is, and people respect that.”
Moving forward, Will and his wife, Shoshauna, are focused on the next chapter of their lives. In addition to their farm outside Vancouver, B.C., they just launched Healthy Hooch Kombucha, a nutritional drink made from fermented tea.
(above) Routley's 12-year stellar career included the National road-race title in 2010. (left) Routley takes the biggest win of his career – Stage 4 and the KOM at the Amgen Tour of California in 2014.