Recently described by Radio 2 as Britain’s favourite lunatic, endurance athlete and Solar Technology Ambassador Sean Conway has done it! He has set a new world record for the fastest, unsupported crossing of Europe by bicycle. Sean has broken the world record by 9 hours after cycling 3,980 miles (6,405 kilometres) in 24 days, 18 hours and 39 minutes. Sean cycled across Europe starting from Cabo da Roca on the west coast of Portugal and finished in Ufa in Russia. Sean arrived in Ufa at 15.40 local time.
Sean takes the title from Jonas Deichmann who cycled 6,450km 25 days, 3 hours and 38 minutes in July last year. At the time, this was 5 days faster than the Guinness World Record holder, James McLaren who cycled from Ufa to Cabo da Roca in 29 days, 18 hours and 25 minutes.
This is Sean’s second attempt at the world record. In August 2017 Sean was making exceptional progress covering 800 miles in 4 days when he sustained an injury forcing him to withdraw. This time around, passing through the point in the Pyrenees where he withdrew last year was his highest moment emotionally.
In 24 days, Sean has cycled across nine countries (Portugal, Spain, France, Switzerland, Germany, Czech Republic, Poland, Ukraine and Russia). Travelling unsupported at all times, Sean has cycled for 16 hours a day, slept rough on 19 occasions and showered just 4 times. Madness may have set in when in Portugal, he picked up a hitchhiker he named Pedro. The animal skull travelled with him all the way to the finish line. Arguably an odd decision when he travelled without a tent and cut off the end of his toothbrush just to save weight. A key piece of his equiipment was a Freeloader SiXER solar battery charger to power his phone and navigation equipment.
Sean said, “After 6 years, 3 failed attempts and 60,000 miles, I have finally achieved a cycling world record!”
Sean Conway: Born in Gloucester and now living in Cumbria, Sean is not new to challenges like this. In 2015, he became the first and only man in history to cycle, swim and run the length of Britain. In 2016 he completed a 4,000-mile ultra-triathlon, which circumnavigated the entire coast of Britain.
The Solar Technology International team enjoyed a very productive time during our first visit to the Palma International Boatshow!
We are delighted to announce a new distributor relationship with E Touch Control Systems / IMP (Majorca) to handle sales throughout the Balearic islands and East Coast of Spain.
Jeremy Usher, Marine Sales Manager for Solar Technology International said: “Palma was a very busy show for us and there proved to be a lot of interest in our flexi solar panels, Hubi solar charger as well as solar powered Arena Lights. The latter are ideal for illuminating areas around the water’s edge, boat yards or ports without access to mains electricity as well as in the equestrian sector for stable yards and riding arenas.”
Epic adventurer and Freeloader Sixer ambassador Sean Conway is off! He is on his mission to become the fastest man to cross Europe by bicycle.
He started from Cabo de Roca on the west coast of Portugal yesterday (Monday 16th April) and he is now attempting to cycle 4,500 miles across Europe finishing in Ufa in Russia in less than 25 days. The attempt will be unsupported meaning Sean will be carrying all of his own kit with him along the way, including his Freeloader Sixer solar battery pack to charge his dynamo spot tracker, spare AAA batteries and iphone for navigation and calls.
To put this distance into perspective, it is over double the distance ridden at the Tour de France (2,200 miles) in roughly the same amount of time (Le Tour was over 23 days).
The current record stands at 29 days, 18 hours and 25 minutes. Sean is looking to knock over 4 days off the record. In order to do this, he will need to cycle roughly 180 miles a day, every day.
Sean first tried breaking the record last year but had to give up through injury. Speaking about his 2018 world record attempt Sean said:
“It was a big decision to come back and give this record another go. I think too often people feel that if they don’t succeed with something then they have to give up. We are so used to hearing about success stories, what is often missed off is how many attempts they took to get there in the first place.
“I admit, I got things wrong on my last attempt of this record. My self-esteem was really low at the end of last summer when I had to withdraw but I picked myself up and thought long and hard about whether I should give this another go – what if I didn’t succeed again? Life is not all about winning and breaking records, it is about giving things the very best shot that you can, and being confident that you could not have done any more. That said, I’m determined to break this world record and I’ve been putting in a lot of work to help me achieve my goal.”
“I also hope to try to use this journey to encourage more people to not only embrace an active lifestyle but to consider travel by bicycle as it is just the best way to see the world. I’ve completed a world first and a world’s furthest but this is my first shot at a world’s fastest record and I can’t wait to get going.”
Yellow Jersey, the cycle insurance provider, is providing Sean with insurance for his world record and are hosting his live tracker.
A bit about Sean Conway…
Born in Gloucester and now living in Cumbria, Sean is not new to challenges like this. In 2015, he became the first and only man in history to cycle, swim and run the length of Britain. In 2016 he completed a 4,000-mile ultra-triathlon, which circumnavigated the entire coast of Britain. Through challenges like this, Sean is always looking to encourage more people to get outdoors and enjoy a more active lifestyle, especially one on two wheels.
Follow Sean on social media via Instagram (seanconwayadventure), Twitter (@Conway_Sean) and Facebook (@MrSeanConway).
Our new Aero Brackets will be available from 31st March to make it easier for solar panels to be removed. from the roofs of caravans, motorhomes and horse boxes.
The new design developed by our own in-house engineers means the solar panel is held in place between the lower shelf and upper lip of the bracket. Caps are then inserted into the aero bracket ends, which lock onto the solar panel frame with stainless self-tapping screws.
The brackets are then bonded to the roof as normal. But in the event the panel needs to be removed, the self-tappers are simply unscrewed to remove the caps and the solar panel glides out.
"We know our aero brackets are a popular way to fix a solar panel to the roof of caravan, motorhome or horse box," explains Adrian Williams, Managing Director of Solar Technology International. "But it does have one disadvantage; namely that it is extremely difficult to remove the solar panel. In fact the only way is to cut the bond between the bracket and the roof - less than ideal. The new aero roof bracket overcomes that problem."
Whilst it is unusual to need to remove the panel, it is sometimes necessary if the panel glass gets broken accidentally by a tree branch strike or purposely by vandals. Customers also sometimes sell their vans and wish to retain the solar panel or they may want to clean the roof space below the solar panel.
Each pack of new aero brackets is supplied with installation instructions. For any further advice or assistance, our technical team is on hand to answer any questions on 01684 774000.
Solar panels on caravans and motorhomes will give many decades of green, renewable and free power. But to continue getting the best from the energy source, campers need to take care of them.
Our nine useful tips detailed here cover cleaning, regular checks and the best positioning for both PV Logic rigid and flexi solar panels. They are available as a pdf by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org