September 06, 2012 – Michael Barry (Sky Procycling) has announced his retirement from professional cycling effective at the end of this season. Barry, a 36-year-old who comes Toronto but lives in Gerona, Spain, has had a colourful cycling career. A domestique, his strengths are time trials and hilly road races. Since starting pro in 1999, Barry has worn the colours of Saturn, US Postal, T-Mobile Team, and Team Sky – read his retirement announcent below.
While Barry was better known for helping team mates such as Lance Armstrong achieve major victories, he also scored stage wins at the 2008 Tour of Missouri and at the 2005 Tour of Austria. Barry also placed fourth overall at the 2003 Tour de Georgia. At the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Barry finished ninth in the road race for Canada. He also raced at the 2010 Tour de France, finishing 99th there.
Apart from being a cyclist, Barry is also a talented writer having authored several books including Inside the Postal Bus (2005), about his life on the road with the United States Postal Team, and Le Métier (2010), a book that details the life of a domestique. He also contributes a regular column to Pedal Magazine.
Barry is married to Dede Demet Barry, a retired American cyclist who was a 2004 Olympic Silver Medalist, and the couple have two kids Liam, 7, and Ashlin, 5.
“After a lifetime of bicycle racing and experiences that have taken me around the world, introduced me to my wife and my closest friends, I am ready to retire as a professional cyclist. 2012 will be my last racing season. The Tour of Beijing will be my final race. Cycling will forever be my passion but it is time to change direction to spend more time with my family. I’ve reached a period in my life where I want to grow in other directions and experience some of what I had put on hold while racing.
As a boy, I was fortunate to have supportive parents who surrounded me with a nurturing community. Through the most challenging moments in my cycling career and life, my family has been the safety net that gave me the confidence to persist. Firstly, I must thank them for their unwavering support and love. My wife, Dede, a retired professional cyclist, supported my career and goals and understood the sacrifices a cyclist’s family must make.
Through my 14 year professional career I’ve been fortunate to race with many of the top teams. From my first coaches and clubmates to Dave Brailsford and my Team Sky teammates I’ve had the opportunity to race and learn from many of the best. The last three years on Team Sky has been ideal on every level. Racing is the job I dreamed of doing. I must thank my teammates, coaches, and rivals for making the job satisfying and memorable. The emotions after crossing the finish line, sitting on the bus with teammates and recounting the day will be hard to recreate.
Many of my fondest memories involve the bike but reach far beyond races: riding through the parks with my mother on the way to school, riding with my father, uncle and aunt through Provence, riding with my wife in the Rocky Mountains, and teaching my sons to ride their bikes. On the bike, our relationships developed. That will continue long after I retire as cycling will always be a part of me. Cycling has given me something that reaches far beyond finish lines and race results. Over the last year, as I’ve thought of retirement and reflected on my career, this has become increasingly clear. The racing journey has been a thrill but the cycling journey will continue.”
Read more about Barry here.
Pedal joins the cycling community around the world in thanking Barry for his contributions to cycling and wishing him and his family the very best.