Woods racing another road cyclists side by side

Mike Woods


Mike Woods rode into the Canadian history books with his bronze medal in the road race at the 2018 UCI World Championships – the first medal by a Canadian man in the event in 34 years. In 2023, he became just the third Canadian to win a stage of the Tour de France, taking the victory in stage nine. 

Woods had earned his first Grand Tour stage victory at the 2018 Vuelta a España, winning the 17th stage just weeks before his world championship podium. In 2020, he finished first in the seventh stage of La Vuelta and was also the runner-up in two stages. 

In April 2018, Woods was the first Canadian to ever reach the podium in the one-day classic Liège-Bastogne-Liège, as he finished second in one of cycling’s five Monuments. He earned his first victory in a one-day road race at the Milano-Torino in October 2019. Earlier that summer, he had made his Tour de France debut, but had to race with two broken ribs after a crash in the 11th stage. 

Woods experienced another tough crash during the fifth stage of Paris-Nice in March 2020, resulting in a fractured right femur that required surgery. But the postponement of Tokyo 2020 would give him time to recover. Four years earlier, in his Olympic debut at Rio 2016, he competed after breaking his hand in three places just a few weeks before the Games, significantly impacting his performance as he placed 55th. Fully healthy at Tokyo 2020, he was part of a sprint to the finish line in the men’s road race, placing fifth for Canada’s second-best Olympic result ever in the event.  Prior to becoming an elite international cyclist, Woods was well on his way to having a successful career as a runner. He holds the record for the fastest mile run on Canadian soil by a Canadian and was a junior Pan American champion in the 1500m, a distance in which he would be ranked in the top 50 in the world. He was Canada’s junior track and field athlete of the year in 2005. 

But while rising through the American collegiate system on full scholarship at the University of Michigan, a series of stress fractures in his left navicular bone (attributed to poor guidance, diet and over-training) forced Woods to abandon his dreams of becoming a professional runner after breaking his foot for the last time in the fall of 2011. 

It was this adversity that led Woods to cycling, which he used as a less impactful way to train. At the insistence of friends, Woods signed up for a few local group rides and races before deciding to make a push as a professional cyclist. After finishing 21st in his first national championship road race in 2012, just two years later he came within one spot of the podium with his fourth-place finish. Woods won his first road race national title in 2024. 

Among Woods’ other notable international results are finishing first in the general classification of Le Route d’Occitanie – La Dépêche du Midi in 2022 and 2023. 

A Little More About Mike

Getting into the Sport: Began cycling at age 25 after a series of injuries ended his running career…Friends pushed him to sign up for more and more races inspiring him to attempt a professional career…Outside Interests: Graduated from the University of Michigan in 2008 with a degree in English… Ambassador for Active for Life and works with a charity in Old Chelsea, Quebec that raises money for trail building in the area; believes in encouraging easily accessible activity for everyone… Founded running coaching company Mile2Marathon in 2013 with fellow Olympian Dylan Wykes which now has hubs in Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal…  Loves reading and perusing record shops… Odds and Ends: Nickname: Woodsy… Has dreamed of competing for Team Canada since Atlanta 1996 where Donovan Bailey won 100m gold and the 4x100m relay also won gold… Played hockey growing up and aspired to play professionally for the Toronto Maple Leafs…

Olympic Highlights

Games Sport Event Finish
Rio 2016Cycling - Road Road Race 55
Tokyo 2020Cycling - RoadRoad Race - Men5

Notable International Results

Olympic Games: 2020 - 5th (road race); 2016 - 55th (road race)

UCI World Championships: 2020 - 12th (road race); 2019 – DNF (road race); 2018 – BRONZE (road race); 2015 – 94th (road race); 2014 – DNF (road race)