A relay team headed by Olympic rowing champion James Cracknell have taken less than 35 hours to cycle from
Team HotChillee, which also included pro cyclists Jerone Walters, Steve Golla and Phill Sykes, rode the 842 miles in 34 hours, 54 minutes and four seconds. Their average speed was 24.1mph. One of the four riders was on the road at all times, with the other three resting in a support vehicle.
Cracknell said: “It was an honour to be part of this fantastic team. This wasn’t a plod up the country – they were taking me along at 25mph at times. It was an amazing experience to ride up the entire length of the country. Everyone was pushing themselves so hard and at times it was extremely tough. It was an incredible experience.”
The aim was to set a LEJOG relay record ahead of next summer’s HotChillee E2E Relay Challenge, when amateur cyclists will have the chance to tackle the ride for themselves.
Steve Golla takes over from James Cracknell
Sigma Sport rider Walters, 36, said: “It was really tough but we pushed each other when the 35-hour mark was in our sights. We just got faster and faster over the last couple of hours. This was a great end to the season for me.”
Sykes, 35, a sports manager from Petersfield, said: “I’m absolutely whacked. It was an awesome experience and great fun. The support crew made it so much easier for us and I don’t think we’d have posted a sub-35 hour time without the logistical backup.”
Golla added: “The target was sub-35 hours but the weather forecast seemed to be against us at the start. Then we realised it was possible and we absolutely buried ourselves to make it. It was a great challenge.”
Sven Thiele, of HotChillee, the marketing and events company behind the challenge, said: “This is a tremendous achievement by James and the HotChillee team. Their power and speed was awesome. They have set a blistering record for cyclists from all over the world to chase. We couldn’t have done it without a fantastic logistical and technical crew. We hope to create the same kind of spirit in next summer’s HotChillee E2E Challenge.”
Cracknell takes a turn