October 05, 2016 (Milton and Burlington, ON) – We caught up with Louise Lalonde, Alex Stieda, Gord Fraser and Brian Walton following their induction into the Cycling Canada Hall of Fame this past weekend at the Mattamy National Cycling Centre for their take on their careers and being honoured as part of the 2016 class of inductees.
The primary focus at sporting events is rightfully on the participants, but behind the scenes are individuals who provide the framework that ensures the competition takes place. One such person is cycling commissaire Louise Lalonde. Highly regarded as an international commissaire for road, track, and para-cycling, Lalonde has also officiated in mountain biking, cyclo-cross, BMX and served as an anti-doping officer. She has served at countless events, from local races to the Olympics in addition to serving on the Cycling Canada Officials’ Committee. Louise was also the first person certified by the UCI to train commissaires in the discipline of para-cycling and wrote the initial curriculum.
Stieda was the first North American to wear the Tour de France Yellow Jersey on the second day of the 1986 TdeF. He went on to wear five jerseys in total that year including the polka dot as best climber, white as best rookie, red for intermediate points, and the combination. After losing the yellow, Alex held the polka dot jersey for an additional five days over the hills of northern France. At the 1982 Commonwealth Games in Brisbane, he won a bronze medal in the individual pursuit and claimed the same result at the 1983 Universiade.
Fraser was a three-time Olympian and five-time Commonwealth Games competitor who logged over two hundred individual race or stage victories in his career. He is considered the most successful professional sprinter in North America. In addition to his three wins in the Tour de Langkawi (2000, 2001 & 2004) he also had wins in the GP du Midi Libre, Criterium International, and GP Rennes. Other highlights included winning two NRC season points’ titles, a Canadian National Championship and a memorable silver medal in the199 Pan Am Games on home soil where Brian Walton won the gold. His top Olympic result was 16th in Sydney.
Walton represented Canada at the Olympic Games on three occasions with 1996 being the most successful with his silver medal performance in the Track Points Race. He was also a three-time 1995 Pan American Games medalist including Gold in the Road Race and Points Race and the Bronze medal in the individual pursuit. At the 1999 Pan American Games in Winnipeg, Brian defended his Road Race title with another Gold medal performance. Brian won numerous international races including the 1989 Milk Race during his twelve-year professional career.