Alan McDonogh and Idai Makaya cross the finish line within the official cutoff time to establish new elliptical cycling record
ElliptiGO Inc, creator of the world’s first elliptical bicycle, today announced that Alan McDonogh and Idai Makaya successfully completed the 2013 London Edinburgh London (LEL) ride. This epic cycling randonnée is held every four years and draws approximately 1,000 cyclists from more than 30 countries. The 2013 LEL course was 881 miles (1,418 kilometers) long and had an official cutoff time of 116 hours and 40 minutes. Finishing the event within the cutoff time is considered a major cycling achievement with success often requiring extensive preparation and tremendous sleep deprivation during the event itself. Prior to the 2013 LEL, no one had attempted an event of this magnitude on an elliptical cycle anywhere in the world.
McDonogh and Makaya set out with the rest of the riders from Loughton, London on the morning of Sunday, July 28th and rode 208 miles on their first day. After just a 3 hour break for a quick nap and food, they began their second day of riding, hoping to complete another 200 miles before resting. The pair reached Edinburgh and the turnaround point behind their planned schedule but on pace to finish within the official time limit. At that point McDonogh felt like he could sustain a faster pace, so the two split up to increase the chances that at least one of them would be able to successfully complete the event. That evening disaster struck Makaya. While taking a brief rest at a control station before the Yad Moss Hills, the volunteers forgot to wake Makaya up at the requested time. This resulted in him spending 4 additional hours at the stop, putting him well behind the pace needed to complete the ride within the official time.
McDonogh continued a strong pace throughout the return trip and as he bore down on London it was clear that he would finish well within the time limit to become the first elliptical cyclist to complete the event. However, but with 75 miles to go, Makaya was still 38 minutes behind pace even though he had ridden 35 hours straight in an effort to make up for the last time. Although many fans had assumed that was too much time to overcome at that point in the journey, Makaya pressed on. With a Herculean effort, Makaya managed to continuously ride throughout the final 43 hours of the event and make up the lost time. He crossed the finish line in 115 hours, 34 minutes and 42 seconds, just 15 minutes and 18 seconds under the cutoff time, and joined McDonogh as a proud finisher of LEL.
“The encouragement we got from friends around the world was hugely important in getting us through this,” stated Makaya. “I can’t thank them enough for what they’ve done to keep us GOing and I know for certain I couldn’t have taken this event on without the learning and sharing I did with Alan, Steve Cook and Warren Simmons over the last year. I definitely couldn’t have finished within the time limits yesterday without the help of Stuart Blofeld who saw I was in trouble and came to help. And I wouldn’t have been able to get through this without the inspiration of my wife, children and all of my friends who supported me before and during this bike ride.”
“We’ve always encouraged our ElliptiGO community to take on challenges and see what they can accomplish,” said Bryan Pate, Co-Founder and Co-President of ElliptiGO. “People have ridden in 24 hour events, they’ve ridden across the U.S. and the length of Britain, but the LEL event is simply on another level. The terrain is challenging for sure, but it’s the lack of sleep and the self-sufficiency required to complete the event under a tight schedule that makes for such an intense experience for the riders. It was an incredibly tough five days for them, and we couldn’t be more proud of Alan and Idai for this accomplishment. What they did truly lies beyond what many of us envisioned would be the limits of elliptical cycling.”
ElliptiGO, Inc. is the San Diego-based company that created the world’s first outdoor elliptical bicycle. Combining the best of running, cycling and the elliptical trainer, the ElliptiGO® delivers a high-performance workout experience that closely mimics running outdoors while eliminating the impact. Elliptical biking is an effective way to build cardiovascular fitness without aggravating injuries and is great for everyone from the weekend warrior to the elite athlete. The ElliptiGO provides the most comfortable, fun and efficient way to get outside and be active. The full line of ElliptiGOs is available for purchase at select retailers nationwide and through the company’s website: www.elliptigo.com.