World Cycle Racing Grand Tour favourite, Mike Hall, has just reached his half way point around the world. On schedule to beat the Guinness World Record of fastest circumnavigation by bicycle, he has now completed almost 9500 miles which positions him over 2000 miles in front of Martin Walker in second place.
In an unexpected twist, and in an appropriate manner to mark Mike’s half way stop, he ended up meeting fellow competitor Richard Dunnett – who has been travelling the opposite way around the world, in New Zealand.
The two cyclists, along with 8 others, departed from the Royal Observatory in Greenwich on 18 February, embarking on an 18,000 mile feat around the world. They are all attempting to beat Alan Bate’s world record of 106 days, and currenly Mike is the only competitor on track to beat it.
So far his unforgiving journey has seen him cycle through South of France, Italy, Slovenia, Greece and Turkey, India, Australia and he is now making his way up the East coast of New Zealand before starting his mammoth ride across the USA.
How are some of the other riders doing?
It hasn’t been an easy ride so far for Zimbabwean adventurer Sean. Despite the smooth start, his progress was halted after he was hit by a truck while travelling through Bald Knob, Arkansas. Left with a compression fracture in his spine, two torn leg tendons and a written off bike, most assumed that the competition ended there for Sean – but they were wrong. He appealed on Twitter to his followers to help him find a bike sponsor as he wanted to get back on the road as soon as physically possible.
Guinness have allowed him to stop the clock due to the extreme nature of his accident and he has recently confirmed an MRI scan shows that there will be no longterm future injury. Sean restarted his journey a few days ago and is now travelling through Arkansas.
After being forced to give up his dream in mid- March following an accident and damaged achilles heal, the heartbreak of quitting the race was just too much for Stephen – he hopped back on the saddle two weeks later to, in his own words, settle some “unfinished business”.
He is now storming across California, having just passed through Venice Beach where he “showed the meat heads and pill poppers what real leg muscles look like!”
After returning back to England only two weeks into the race to regroup and replan, Jason Woodhouse has had a lot of mileage to make up. He’s currently in the USA riding through towns flattened by tornados, getting directions off hardened criminals and having dinner with American TV stars.
Having had two crashes, a broken bicycle and several bouts of food poisoning, Stuart is still soldiering on.
With donated bike parts on the way to him in Bangkok, he is currently having some down time and enjoying the local area where is he is becoming increasingly irritated by people on their ‘gap yah’ !