Maybe that whole round the world inside 80 days thing was just a warm-up. Mark Beaumont’s next goal is to secure the prestigious penny farthing hour record.
The Scottish Sun reports that Frederick J Osmond’s record has stood since 1891. Beaumont will try and set a new mark at Herne Hill Velodrome in Surrey in June.
The Scot took delivery of a custom-made penny farthing on January 2 and appears to be taking his attempt at least semi-seriously.
He said: “I have been training hard around the parks of Edinburgh and you get some funny looks. The hour record is 23 and a half miles, which is pretty nuts on a penny farthing, but I have been quite enjoying not training ultra-endurance – this is just me and my mates wanting to do something eccentric and daft.”
Beaumont does have a bit of experience, having cycled the 100-mile Etape Royale route on a penny farthing in 2015. Speaking at the time, he said it was the first time since he was a kid that he’d had to walk up hills and that descending was “downright treacherous.”
Looking ahead to his hour record attempt, he said: “Everything I have ever done has felt like a natural stepping stone to the next expedition but the honest truth is that going round the world in 80 days doesn’t naturally lead to anything – that was my Everest. Last year was completely professional and I don’t want to take life quite so seriously this year.”