Round-the-world cyclist Mark Beaumont, who held the Guinness World Record for the fastest cirumnavigation of the globe by bicycle until it was beaten by Vin Cox earlier this year, has been named Top Scot in the Glenfiddich Spirit of Scotland Awards.
The 27-year-old, who this year appeared on TV in the BBC documentary Cycling The Americas, charting his ride from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego, joins the likes of Sir Chris Hoy and JK Rowling as a winner of the overall award, and saw off competition from Ryder Cup winning captain Colin Montgomorie, among others, to in the top honour.
Afterwards, Beaumont, who two years ago won the sports category following his record-breaking round-the world ride, said, "It's incredible. I don't see myself in that league.
He added: "It's amazing, completely out of the blue. It's an incredible line-up," he said.
Beaumont, whose record-breaking circumnavigation is recounted in the book, The Man Who Cycled The World, and which was also the subject of a BBC documentary, continued: "When I graduated, I had grand hopes of making a name and a career, but you have to go out there and do it."
John McLellan, editor of The Scotsman, said: "For guts, determination and imagination, few people in the world can match Mark Beaumont. Not only is he thoroughly deserving of every accolade he receives but he is a superb ambassador for Scotland and a role model for young people everywhere.”
The newspaper adds that Beaumont is now planning his next journey, and while no details are being released at this stage, it is known that he won’t be undertaking it alone, and it won’t be on a bicycle.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.