09/28/2012 12:45 EDT | Updated 11/28/2012 05:12 EST

Hundred-year-old French cyclist creates record riding 100 km in 4 hours, 17 minutes

LYON, France - French cyclist Robert Marchand has ridden 100 kilometres in four hours 17 minutes and 27 seconds.

Doesn't sound fast? Consider this: Marchand is 100 years old.

Setting off on his Trek racing bike around noon at a track in Lyon, Marchand covered the distance at an average pace of 23.3 km/h — not far off the 24.251 km/h pace he kept up to set the world hour record for his age group in Switzerland last February.

No prior record for a centenarian riding 100 km exists, but cycling's international governing body will recognize Marchand's feat, French cycling federation head David Lappartient said.

The president of Marchand's cycling club says he's an inspiration.

"He's an example for humanity, he gives people hope," said Gerard Mistler.