Round the world cyclist week 3: Istanbul

36 hour break in Istanbul before he heads for Iran and Pakistan…

Round the world cyclist James Bowthorpe is now in Istanbul resting for 36 hours before the next leg of his journey. Since setting off March 29th (three weeks ago today) he has ridden through France, Belgium, Germany, Poland, the Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria and now Turkey, the next leg of his journey will take him through Turkey and then across Iran towards Pakistan and India. His goal is to ride 18,000 around the world in 150 days.

Along the way he has encountered, headwinds in France, Belgium and Romania. James has a daily target of 120 miles, early on the combination of wind, and some early technical issues held him back but as his legs have gotten stronger he has clawed back the deficit. If he keeps to his schedule James will be on course to break the round the world cycling record record set by fellow Briton, Mark Beaumont. The Scot rode around the world in 195 days last year.

James is riding a Santos aluminium touring bike fitted with a belt drive, he reports that the drive has stretched, (as expected) but that he will now be rectifying that in Istanbul. In fact, his main problems have not been with his equipment, as he said on Twitter, “my heel has been my achilles heel” – heel pain has proved a problem, and he has asked for advice on tendonitis.

Memorable moments so far include saddle sores in Poland, "woody Guthrie, Bound For Glory" graffiti on some pipework in a small Polish town, going to the wrong border crossing into the Ukraine and having to take a 22Km detour to the right one, Romanian warngins of bandits in the mountains between Bulgaria and Turkey, in fact he bumped into a friend that runs a recording studio near James's home.

James is riding to raise money and awareness of research into Parkinson's Disease, he has set himself a target of £1.8m and if you would like to make a donation you can do so via his website: you can also follow his progress on Twitter

Tony has been editing cycling magazines and websites since 1997 starting out as production editor and then deputy editor of Total Bike, acting editor of Total Mountain Bike and then seven years as editor of Cycling Plus. He launched his first cycling website - the Cycling Plus Forum at the turn of the century. In 2006 he left C+ to head up the launch team for Bike Radar which he edited until 2008, when he co-launched the multi-award winning - which he continues to edit today. His favourite ride is his ‘commute’ - which he does most days inc weekends and he’s been cycle-commuting since 1994. His favourite bikes are titanium and have disc brakes.

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