Taiwanese round-the-world cyclists reunited with stolen bike in Vancouver

5,000 miles into trip, cyclist aiming to show his friends the world via Facebook has bike stolen

A round-the-world cyclist from Taiwan has been reunited with his bicycle after it was stolen in Vancouver last week.

Jacky Chen was 5,000 kilometres into his trip when he was distraught to find his bike stolen from a back garden where it was locked up.

He immediately reported it stolen, but enquiries led nowhere until a local news reporter chased up the theft with Vancouver police.

Officers then recalled that they had stopped a 24-year-old man riding the same bike the day after the theft and seized the bike, but hadn’t been able to reunite it with Mr Chen, who had not provided the police with the bike’s serial number at the time.

Despite Mr Chen’s bike now missing its pannier racks and suffering a flat tyre, he was delighted to be reunited with it. He told CBC: "It's just like my partner, a portion of my trip. So, many thanks."

Mt Chen says that his trip was inspired by the travel stories of a Japanese man who cycled around the world, and has been three years in progress.

He has been cycling since June, when he left his job as an electrical engineer in Taiwan and started his pedalling trek in Anchorage, Alaska.

He says that his aim is to show his friends who can't travel what the world is like, through Facebook.

"I hope I could visit over 100 countries," he said. "I always update what I see, the view and the people I meet and anything I experience.”

He intends to take three to five years over his trip in total.

Back in 2010 we reported on the story of a cyclist from Oxfordshire who planned to use his redundancy settlement to spend two months riding much of the route from London to Sydney, Australia who finally returned home after three years in the saddle and 37,000 miles.

Former IT worker John Harwood, who combined intercontinental flights with spells on his bike to get down under, enjoyed the experience of cycling across continents so much that he carried on pedalling in a trip that took him to countries such as New Zealand, Japan and the United States.

But there was disappointment for the 49-year-old when he arrived back at his home village of Combe, near Woodstock, and decided to treat himself to a well-earned pint of real ale only to find that his local pub, the Cock Inn, was shut.

Mr Harwood, who embarked on his journey in May 2007, told the Witney Gazette: “I didn’t really expect to be gone for more than two months. But I decided that if I was still enjoying myself when I got to Sydney I would carry on.”

Restricting himself to a budget of £20 a day to make his redundancy settlement last and also renting out his home to help fund the trip, Mr Harwood averaged 60 miles a day in the saddle and camped in the open or stayed with people he met while on his travels.

During his epic journey, he caught a virus in Delhi, was bitten by a paralysis tick while in Australia, and even had £800 stolen while he was in Burma – although the newspaper reports that he was so shocked by the conditions the suspected thieves faced in jail that he took them food and water.

After an unpromising start, having to be bribed by her parents to learn to ride without stabilisers, Sarah became rather keener on cycling in her university years, and was eventually persuaded to upgrade to proper road cycling by the prospect of a shiny red Italian bike, which she promptly destroyed by trapping a pair of knickers in the rear derailleur. Sarah writes about about cycling every weekend on road.cc.

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