Saturday, February 16, 2008

Round the World? cyclist

A British man has smashed the record for cycling round the world. Mark Beaumont, from Fife, completed the journey in 195 days - beating the previous record of 276 days.

The 25-year-old crossed the finish line at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris at 1430 GMT after an 18,000-mile journey which began on 5 August last year.

Mr Beaumont passed through 20 countries on his way, including Pakistan, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand and the US. His solo journey has been dramatic at times. He endured floods and road rage, and was knocked off his bike in the American state of Louisiana by an elderly motorist who drove through a red light.

Mr Beaumont, who is originally from Bridge of Cally in Perthshire but now lives in Newburgh, also had his wallet and camera stolen from a motel. However, he is now celebrating.

He said: "I'm delighted, although I think it will take a while for it to sink in. It's great to see my friends and family and now I'm looking forward to getting some sleep."

Mark's first long-distance ride was from John O'Groats to Land's End, aged 12.

His mother Una said: "I am very proud. With Mark, the passion is being the first and the fastest. It's about pushing himself to the limit."

Leg 1: Paris to Istanbul = 2,054m Countries: France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Poland, Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey.
LEG 2: Istanbul to Calcutta = 5,234m Countries: Turkey, Pakistan, India.
LEG3: Bangkok to Singapore = 1,253m Countries: Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore
LEG 4: Perth to Brisbane = 4,085m Country: Australia
LEG 5: Dunedin to Auckland = 907m Country: New Zealand
LEG 6: San Francisco to St Augustine, Florida = 2,833m Country: USA
LEG 7: Lisbon to Paris = 1,180m Countries: Portugal, Spain, France

Total Distance: 18,492 miles in 195 days

There's a diary & pictures from the BBC HERE

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