“Diabetes is not a weakness, we must move forward and continue to pursue our dreams. I hope to have a great season and give the best of myself with Team Novo Nordisk.”
French puncheur Sacha Bietry is now entering his third year with the Team Novo Nordisk development team after a mixed 2021 season with solid performances at the Istrian Spring Trophy in Croatia and the In the Footsteps of the Romans stage race in Bulgaria the standout moments.
A promising young talent, the 21-year-old will gain more high-level racing experience in 2022 with a busy European racing calendar on the schedule.
Born in Epinal, in the Vosges region of northeastern France, Bietry started cycling as a six-year-old and quickly developed a passion for the sport. Bietry would train with friends after school and on weekends and started competing at an early age.
The youngest of four kids, Bietry recently completed high school where he graduated with honors in business studies – something he would like to continue in the future.
When Bietry was 17 years old, his performance on the bike and general physical well-being started to change. Barely able to turn the pedals ten minutes into a race, he knew something wasn’t right. After going for blood tests, Bietry was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.
Despite being the first person with diabetes in his family, Bietry’s initial reaction was remarkably calm even if he admitted to feeling a little lost and bewildered at not knowing much about diabetes. With the support of his family, friends, and cycling coach, Bietry quickly realized his life didn’t have to change too drastically.
A strong puncheur who excels on rolling terrain, Bietry was determined to continue cycling. This drive was reinforced when his coach informed him about Team Novo Nordisk pro rider Charles Planet, who lived nearby, and the mission behind the team.
Inspired and benefitting from a lighter school schedule, Bietry stepped up his training, and on his 18th birthday, he won his first race. He said standing on the top step was the best present he could have asked for and he didn’t want to stop there.
That victory served as a breakthrough performance and earned Bietry a spot at the Team Novo Nordisk’s Talent ID camp in 2019, an opportunity that he did not let pass by. On his first trip to the United States, Bietry did enough to earn selection for the 2020 development team.
Off the bike, Bietry tries to balance the physical exertions of training and racing with the right amount of downtime while studying to improve his English and preparing for what it’ll be like living and racing with teammates from multiple nationalities.