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Pippa Handley wins women's TransContinental Race

14th overall for storming Scot with Gaby Leveridge just behind

Pippa Handley from Edinburgh became the first woman to cross the finish line in this year's TransContinental Race when she reached Istanbul yesterday afternoon, 12 days 5 hours and 44 minutes after leaving London.

She was followed just under five hours later by Gaby Leveridge of Cookham, Berkshire, who has the unusual distinction of being the first woman to come second in the TransContinental as only one woman, Juliana Buhring, rode in 2013. Vasiliki Voutzali is currently 60km from the finish and expected to take third place sometime this afternoon.

Here's Handley looking tired but very pleased as she hands in her brevet card:



Handley was the 14th rider to cross the finish line, a feat comparable to Buhring's 2013 9th place finish in a much smaller field. Final rider distances have not yet been announced (the SPOT tracker distances on the TransContinental site are far from definitive) but it looks like Handley's average speed was significantly higher thah Buhring's.

Leveridge led Handley at one stage of the race, after pulling ahead by taking a ferry across the Adriatic instead of taking an overland route. But that bit of tactical nous wasn't enough to beat Handley's sheer grit.

In one of those bits of bizareness that have typified the TransContinental, Handley completed the race with just one sock after the other was stolen by a dog. On her run into Istanbul she tweeted:



As of this morning a total of 23 riders have completed the TransContinental. Last year 20 of the 31 starters reached Istanbul.

Here's the finish list so far:

1 Kristof Allegaert 07:22:44
2 Richard Dunnett 09:08:05
3 Josh Ibbett 09:08:08
4 Steffen Streich 09:17:02
5 Matthais Muller 10:08:56
6 Mark Collinson 10:11:45
7 Adrian O'Sullivan 10:19:03
8 Stephen Bailey 11:16:02
9 Gunther Desmedt 11:19:06
10 Samual Becuw 11:22:51
11 Robert Goldie 11:23:28
12 Ethan Stewart 12:01:49
13 Andrew Allday 12:02:33
14 Pippa Handley 12:05:44
15 Kim Raeymaekers 12:07:37
16 Gaby Leveridge 12:10:39
17 Chris Phillips 12:10:40
18 Ben Thompson 12:11:02
19 Michael Woolridge 12:13:23
20 Tom Stone 12:16:18
21 Rob Savin 12:16:20
22 Hans-Jurgen Schmitz-Rech 12:18:55
23 Massimillano Fancoli 12:20:16


John has been writing about bikes and cycling for over 30 years since discovering that people were mug enough to pay him for it rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work.

He was heavily involved in the mountain bike boom of the late 1980s as a racer, team manager and race promoter, and that led to writing for Mountain Biking UK magazine shortly after its inception. He got the gig by phoning up the editor and telling him the magazine was rubbish and he could do better. Rather than telling him to get lost, MBUK editor Tym Manley called John’s bluff and the rest is history.

Since then he has worked on MTB Pro magazine and was editor of Maximum Mountain Bike and Australian Mountain Bike magazines, before switching to the web in 2000 to work for Along with founder Tony Farrelly, John was on the launch team for and subsequently became editor in chief of Future Publishing’s group of cycling magazines and websites, including Cycling Plus, MBUK, What Mountain Bike and Procycling.

John has also written for Cyclist magazine, edited the BikeMagic website and was founding editor of before handing over to someone far more representative of the site's main audience.

He joined in 2013. He lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.

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Dobbsy | 9 years ago

Great effort from both Pippa and Gaby! Was fortunate enough to take part in this years race (#99) spent some time on the road with Gaby and Ben.

Amazing experience and epic adventure!

Hopefully I'll be back next year and close out the final 500k without breaking down!

Blackhound | 9 years ago

And Josh beat Richard by 35 minutes. I believe Richard has also accepted a penalty of 9 or 12 hours for riding a forbidden road.

Congratulations to all but when 5 hours is 'just' behind it puts the race in perspective. 300km a day for 12 days to make top 20 is incredible.

Chuck replied to Blackhound | 9 years ago
Blackhound wrote:

riding a forbidden road.

Sounds mysterious!
Awesome effort by all though. I'm a little bit jealous actually.

OldRidgeback | 9 years ago

David King has finished as well and I thought he was ahead of fellow Scot/Edinburgh resident Pippa.

OldRidgeback | 9 years ago

David King has finished as well and I thought he was ahead of fellow Scot/Edinburgh resident Pippa.

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