Houstonian finishes Tour de France dead last, but first in our hearts

HOUSTON – It's a story of true perseverance and determination, as Lawson Craddock finished 145th out of 145 riders in the Tour de France.

Though he was dead last in the race, he places first in our hearts.

Craddock overcame a bad crash in the first stage of the race, suffering a shoulder injury and a huge gash above his eye. He said he told himself he wouldn't stop the race unless he absolutely had to. 

Craddock wasn't in it for himself or the glory; he was racing to raising money for the Houston Velodrome.

Craddock said the Houston Veldrome was the outdoor track where he grew up learning how to cycle, and it was damaged by Hurricane Harvey.

Craddock promised to donate $100 the Velodrome for every stage of the Tour de France he finished. He had a goal of raising about $102,000. So far he has raised more than $220,000.

Carl Jones coached Craddock for a few years when he was 13 and says he is not surprised by Craddock's determination.

"We are proud of our guy. We are proud of Lawson. We are happy that he has thought of the Alkike Velodrome, that place that he was raised, to keep the programs going. We're really proud of him," said Jones.

Even though Craddock finished last, Houston is proud of him because he finished.

If you'd like to support Craddock's mission to help rebuild the Velodrome, a GoFundMe has been created to do just that.

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