Friends and supporters of record-breaking British cyclist Lee Fancourt, currently competing in the TransAm Bike Race in the United States, have raised concerns about his welfare after his GPS device stopped updating his location yesterday – although it now appears he is safe and well.
At around 4.30pm BST on Thursday afternoon, around 36 hours after his last location had been logged on Trackleaders.com, updates of his location began to be posted again.
The Gloucestershire rider, aged 39 and who has set himself the challenge of breaking 15 cycling-related Guinness World Records, set off on the 4,400 mile coast-to-coast race from Oregon to Virginia last Saturday.
His last confirmed location until this afternoon appears to have been a picnic spot at Wilderness Gateway, Montana, on US Highway 12. There is also a campground at the location, which is part of the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests.
Earlier today, Graham Foot from Gloucester bike shop Slam6, which sponsors him, posted a message to Fancourt’s Facebook page on behalf of the cyclist’s girlfriend, Praveena Thakor, who wrote:
I have contacted the sheriff’s office and they have looked up there in the dark but there were no signs of Lee. I have given them more information in regards to his Gps location, what route he came from, where he's heading,and details of the tracker. They will look again at first light in the same area. I have to contact them later. If in the meantime anyone is in the area and could have a look or if any riders have seen him please contact me as soon as possible. Please feel free to share and let's get the word out there. Thankyou Praveena.
In another update to the Facebook page shortly after 5pm BST today, Foot said:
Graham here, Just had word and seen that our Lee is alive. nothing more to report but we can all relax. I expect he will be on here shortly. Massive thank you for all the messages of support and help everyone.
No doubt we’ll find out soon why Fancourt’s updates ceased being posted to the ride tracking page, although Foot said on Facebook yesterday that it may have been due to a faulty dynamo failing to power his spot tracker device.
Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.