Round the world cyclist week 5: Tehran

Turkey and Iran nailed, James now heads for India in his quest for the record

by Tony Farrelly   May 4, 2009  

Globe Cycle Homepage

37 Days 3590 miles 132 days to go

Another week, another country as James continues to make good time in his attempt to break the round the world cycling record and to raise money and awareness for research into Parkinson's disease. Last week James finally left Turkey and crossed into Iran, where for a while he lost internet contact with the outside world. Including his stopover in Istanbul James spend almost two weeks in Turkey – the longest time in any one country so far, but then it is a very big country.

By contrast he's already left Iran and as you read this he's heading for Amritsar in India via Dubai. He's flying not pedalling, his original route would have taken him through Pakistan, but the security situation there made that look an increasingly dangerous proposition as he explained in his blog:

“It seems like an unnecessary risk to take, not just for myself but everyone there who will be escorting me, especially as violence has increased fourfold over the last year and westerners are also being targeted. I intend to make up the mileage in the US with an extended and much harder route, going further south than originally intended and going over more mountains.”

So far so good on the equipment front, it's all holding up well and his saddle sores have cleared up too – which must be a relief. Anyone who likes “interesting” architecture should check out his latest blog entry which features a fantastic pic of a house made out of windows.

James has set himself a target of raising £1.8m for research into Parkinson's and this week he added another one per cent towards that target, the total raised so far stands at £36,685.38. If you want to support James in his quest you can donate at his site, you can also follow his progress via live GPS updates at and he also has his own video channel on Youtube.

Next week James will be cycling on through India on his way to Thailand, Malaysia, and then Australia.