"Torchy" Peden was one of the greatest cyclists of his era and in the 1930's CCM presented him with a gold-plated bicycle that he rode in special exhibitions. He was the world champion long-distance cyclist in 1934 and at the height of his career he earned as much as $50,000 a year - a huge sum during the depths of the great Depression. "Torchy" - so named by a 1927 columnist who described the red headed youngster as the "flame haired Victoria youth [who] led the pack like a torch" - was a tireless cyclist who missed winning at the 1928 Amsterdam Olympics because of three tire punctures and food poisoning. He turned pro in 1930 and finished 145 of 148 races, winning 37 of them. As well, along with his brother Doug, he was a formidable force on the grueling six-day cycling circuit that the two dominated for years.