Home cooking at last for round-world cyclist

Fastest man to pedal around globe enjoys curries and bread cooked by dad

For someone who spent nearly six months eating petrol station fare and lost one-fifth of his body weight from severe "Delhi belly", James Bowthorpe – the fastest man to pedal around the globe – was unsurprisingly excited about the prospect of home cooking.

The 31-year-old cabinet- maker from Balham, south London, was mobbed by supporters in Hyde Park on Saturday when he returned sporting a shaggy beard after completing his gruelling 18,000-mile bike ride across 20 countries in just 175 days. The challenge, sponsored by The Independent, meant that Bowthorpe cycled for up to 14 hours a day, beating the record set by Mark Beaumont by 19 days. "I spent last night with my family and my girlfriend's family and had a home-cooked meal, three curries, and bread cooked by my dad," said a bleary-eyed Bowthorpe yesterday. "I have spent the past five-and-a-half months eating whatever I can find, so often food from a petrol station or from the side of the road so it was really great." He also enjoyed a "sneaky beer". He said: "It was a Spitfire. I almost fell over."

Bowthorpe tried not to think about home comforts too much on the trip, during which he carted 90lb of clothes, gadgets and camping gear across some of the world's toughest roads, be-cause, "dreaming of something five months away might just have scuppered the trip".

Yesterday, those memories were left on the dusty roads. He enjoyed a 12-hour sleep and a Sunday lie-in. "Being asleep more than five hours is quite a treat," he said. "I'm not really an early riser and you also have to wind down for a while after cycling, which meant that I've not been sleeping more than five hours in the past five and a half months," he said.

Bowthorpe began his epic adventure in March with the aim of raising £1.8m – roughly £100 for every mile – for research into Parkinson's disease. He faced an attempted kidnapping in Iran, a wombat attack in Australia and "some idiots" throwing a kebab at him through a car window in Western Australia. The endurance cyclist also encountered some kind turns, including free clothes and bike maintainance along the way.

Despite covering 100 miles a day, on average, Bowthorpe cannot hang up his cycling shorts just yet. "I'm starting to seize up a bit so I've got to do a bit of cycling today," he said with a groan. "It was something I was warned about.

"I've been cycling 14 hours a day for the past five-and-a-half-months so I will have to do a little bit this afternoon, maybe 10 miles."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Ashdown Group: HR Manager - West London - £50,000

£40000 - £50000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: HR Manager - West London - £...

Recruitment Genius: Recruitment & HR Administrator

£17000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Guru Careers: HR Manager / HR Business Partner

£55 - 65k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: A HR Manager / HR Business Partner i...

Recruitment Genius: Senior HR Assistant

£23000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Company's vision is to be t...

Day In a Page

Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most
Katy Perry prevented from buying California convent for $14.5m after nuns sell to local businesswoman instead

No grace of God for Katy Perry as sisters act to stop her buying convent

Archdiocese sues nuns who turned down star’s $14.5m because they don’t approve of her
Ajmer: The ancient Indian metropolis chosen to be a 'smart city' where residents would just be happy to have power and running water

Residents just want water and power in a city chosen to be a ‘smart’ metropolis

The Indian Government has launched an ambitious plan to transform 100 of its crumbling cities
Michael Fassbender in 'Macbeth': The Scottish play on film, from Welles to Cheggers

Something wicked?

Films of Macbeth don’t always end well - just ask Orson Welles... and Keith Chegwin
10 best sun creams for body

10 best sun creams for body

Make sure you’re protected from head to toe in the heatwave
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon files

Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games
Women's World Cup 2015: How England's semi-final success could do wonders for both sexes

There is more than a shiny trophy to be won by England’s World Cup women

The success of the decidedly non-famous females wearing the Three Lions could do wonders for a ‘man’s game’ riddled with cynicism and greed
How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map