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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

New Round-the-World Cycling Speed Record Set

Remember Alan Bate? He was the guy I wrote about way back in March who was setting out to attempt to circle the globe, on his bike, in just 100 days. He completed that journey last week, and while he didn't quite finish up in 100 days, he did set a new speed record for circling the globe on a bike.

On August 4th, still recovering from a bad bout of food poisoning that he had suffered a few days earlier, Alan rode into the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, where his ride began a few months back, and officially finished the challenge with 114 days on the clock. Not a bad bit of riding, but still two full weeks shy of his target date.

Over the past three and a half months, Alan has ridden from Thailand south to Malaysia, where he hopped a flight to Australia and proceeded to ride across that continent. From there it was on to a brief stage in New Zealand before jetting off to the U.S. and a long coast-to-coast ride through the southern border states and up the East Coast. Another flight took him to South America, where he rode south from Guyana to Uruguay, and then north again through Brazil. The next flight took him across the Atlantic to Portugal, where he proceeded to ride through Europe, visiting Spain, France, the U.K., and a number of other countries before proceeding on to Turkey and into Asia. Alan than crossed through Iran, Pakistan, and part of India before catching one last flight back to Thailand for the final leg.

All told, the journey covered more than 18,000 miles, which qualifies it for the circumnavigation record, which Bate now holds. He managed to shave more than 50 days off the next closes rider, by averaging over 158 miles per day, no matter the conditions.

Pretty impressive feat to say the least. When the challenge was first announced I thought that 100 days seemed rather ambitious, but he gave it a heck of a run. 114 is still a short time to ride around the world, and it is going to take a massive push for someone to beat this record any time soon.

Congrats Alan! Very well done!

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