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French adventure cyclist Steven Le Hyaric is no stranger to long and difficult rides. Over 51 days in 2018 he crossed the Nepalese Himalayas by mountain bike; he’s ridden across France in less than 20 days; he’s crossed Corsica in 10 days; and he’s done more than his fair share of ultra-endurance races too.
In 2019, Le Hyaric set off on another expedition, attempting to ride from Paris to Dakar — the capital of Senegal — in 20 days. In Le Hyaric’s words “This project was my idealistic dream of raising awareness of climate change and desertification by exposing myself to heat on a track of 5,600 km”. It was also Le Hyaric’s way of paying tribute to French industrialist Pierre-Georges Latécoère “who, from December 1918, imagined an air ‘line’ connecting France to Senegal through Spain and Morocco.”
By Le Hyaric’s reckoning, riding from Paris to Dakar in 20 days — an average of 280 km a day through Spain and down across northern Africa — would give him a new world record. Check out the engaging film above to see how his attempt went.