A Team GB superfan is cycling 10,000 kilometres in 80 days to show his support for those competing in this year’s Olympics.
Jamie Ramsay, from East Lothian, Scotland, has been travelling around the UK for 73 days and is planning on crossing the finishing line in Stoke-on-Trent – or as he is calling it, “Stokeyo” – on the day the Olympics starts on July 23.
His trek was originally meant to start in the UK and finish in Tokyo, the host city of the Olympics, before the Covid-19 pandemic thwarted any plans of travelling across the globe – so instead, he decided to replicate the 6,200-mile journey on the roads of the UK.
Mr Ramsay told the PA news agency: “The journey has been incredible so far.
“We kind of sat down and thought the Olympics is still going ahead, so we’ll go ahead. We kind of re-planned and looked at the UK and thought, ‘oh god, the journey won’t live up to it and be as exciting as Russia’ and that kind of stuff.
“I’ve had the best time just discovering the UK, we’re a tiny little country but we’re packed with amazing things.”
Throughout the journey, Mr Ramsay has travelled between 130km and 190km (80 and 118 miles) a day whilst carrying his tent, cooker, and food to use as he sets up camp most nights.
He also had tickets to watch the Olympics, but this summer’s games will be held without fans as Tokyo continues to battle high numbers of Covid cases.
Mr Ramsay said: “I was disappointed on two levels – on one level I wasn’t able to do this journey across Russia, which I always wanted to do, and I had tickets to go and watch the Olympics.
“I’m not going to get the real-life atmosphere in the stadium, which I have dreamt of.
“It would have been amazing in Tokyo but I am going to be able to watch every sport at home.”
The whole bike ride includes 120,000 metres of incline which is 13 times the size of the highest point in the world, Mount Everest, with a total of 8,849 metres (29,032ft).
Mr Ramsay has also reached the four compass points of the UK whilst being on the journey.
He said: “I went to Lizard Point, Cornwall, which is the very south, and then Belleek in the very west of Northern Ireland and then went to the north of Scotland (Dunnet Head, North Highlands) and today I went to Lowestoft Ness, which is the most easterly.”
But it has not been plain sailing, as Mr Ramsay battled 21 consecutive rainy days at the start. He also cycled in a face net to fight off off midge attacks, went eight days without washing and has nursed his bike through countless repairs.
Among the repairs, he travelled the length of Hadrian’s Wall with a broken bike and has had two new chainsets, three cassettes, three chains, and had to repair the brakes several times.
Mr Ramsay said: “The bike is the one that’s had the injuries more than me.
“I’ve been to seven or eight bike shops to get the bike fixed and every single shop has dropped tools and just helped me, which has been amazing.”
:: Jamie Ramsay is being supported in his efforts by Team GB’s main sponsorship at Tokyo 2020 from peanut butter brand Whole Earth.