Stephen Roche has been unveiled as Grand Marshal of this year’s St. Patrick’s Festival parade in Dublin.
Roche was chosen by festival organisers for his outstanding contribution to the sport of cycling and the Dubliner will lead the parade ‘Peloton’ on its 2.6km route through his home city on Monday, 17 March.
The announcement caps off a great week for Roche, who officially entered the Giro d’Italia Hall of Fame at an event in Northern Ireland on Tuesday.
The tribute to Roche comes on the year that the Giro d’Italia stages the ‘Grande Partenza’ or ‘big start’ in Ireland from 9-11 May.
"It is a huge honour to have been chosen as grand marshal for this year’s St. Patrick’s Festival in a year that Ireland hosts the Giro d’Italia" - Stephen Roche
Roche’s son Nicolas Roche and nephew Dan Martin currently compete on the professional tour.
Roche was one of the most successful cyclists of his generation, accumulating an impressive 58 professional career wins over his 13 year tenure.
1987 was Roche’s landmark year as he became only the second cyclist in history to capture the ‘Triple Crown of victories’ - winning the Tour de France, the Giro d’Italia and the World Championship in one season.
On receiving the honour, Roche commented: “I am an extremely proud Irishman and proud to have flown the flag for Ireland throughout my cycling career.
“It is a huge honour to have been chosen as Grand Marshal for this year’s St. Patrick’s Festival in a year that Ireland hosts the Giro d’Italia.
“Throughout my career, I have become accustomed to seeing city streets lined with people but this will be a truly unique experience, one that I am greatly looking forward to.”