Edinburgh-based round the world cyclist Mark Beaumont retakes North Coast 500 record

Edinburgh-based round the world cyclist Mark Beaumont has retaken his North Coast 500 crown, knocking 30 minutes off the previous record.

Beaumont completed the 516-mile circuit of the Highlands on Sunday in 28 hours 35 minutes, which is also almost nine hours quicker than when he set the original record for the route in 2015.

The 39-year-old’s record attempt at the weekend, revealed by The Scotsman two weeks ago, involved climbing a total of 10,000m (32,000ft) – more than the height of Mount Everest.

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He rode continuously except for breaks totalling just 16 minutes, managing an average speed of 18.2mph despite strong winds.

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Starting and finishing at Inverness Castle, Beaumont beat the previous record of 29 hours five minutes set last year by Duns-based Robbie Mitchell, who was brought up in Durness on the route.

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Beaumont’s 2015 record was 37 hours 56 minutes.

He also holds the record for cycling round the world – in 78 days 14 hours in 2017.

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Mark Beaumont was out of the saddle for just 16 minutes on the 516-mile circuit. Picture: Markus Stitz

Beaumont said: “It was even harder to break Robbie’s record than I thought.

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"My best memories from the last 28 hours and the days and weeks prior to the attempt have involved the incredible support team, and having my wife Nicci along for the ride for the first time was special."

Beaumont said he hoped a documentary to be made of the run by GCN+ would encourage others.

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He said: "I hope this film inspires people to explore the north of Scotland, but I wouldn’t recommend trying it non stop.”

Mark Beaumont completing the ride in Inverness. Picture: Markus Stitz

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