Wherever and whenever possible during their travels Gary and Rachel have promoted e-bikes as a fun, healthy and environmentally friendly form of transport. They said the interest in their e-bike long distance record attempt had been overwhelming, with people at times queuing up to talk to them about their trip and their Haibike e-bikes/Tout Terrain trailer combination. “We have also done radio interviews, have been featured in several newspaper stories and in specialist e-bike/cycling magazines, the interest in our trip has been amazing,” Gary said. “We have also had people – mostly in the over 40 age bracket – who have emailed us to tell us that we are an ‘inspiration’ and that our trip has motivated them to purchase an e-bike and to start cycling after a break of many years or to switch from a traditional bike to an e-bike. “This is fantastic given that all we are doing is what we love to do – cycle, but I guess we have proven that if two people of our age – 60 and 57 – can set a world e-bike long distance record, then e-bikes are suitable for anyone of any age – no matter what distances are cycled.” Both Gary and Rachel also said they were personally delighted to have set a new world e-bike record after cycling for an average of 75 kilometres per day during 220 days of cycling. With just six days of wet weather cycling during that time, Rachel said they had been incredibly lucky with the weather. “I think we are the only people in history who have cycle toured in Scotland and never saw rain,” she joked. “We also only had one day of rain in Ireland, which was amazing given the dire predictions before we arrived from so many people of what we could expect from the weather.” Above all else the e-Bike Cycle Tourists claim they are delighted to have proven conclusively that it is possible to go long distance cycle touring on an e-bike. Gary said they were told by many people before they set off that what they were planning was not possible due to the daily drama of having to charge their e-bike batteries given the decision not to carry a back-up solar charging system. “While it is true that we did have reservations before setting out about how easy it would be to find mains electricity outlets on a daily basis to charge our Bosch batteries, the truth of the matter is that we should never have worried,” Gary said.
The only thing that had to be replaced was a Bosch controller on one of the bikes and this was only after it was damaged after the e-bike fell over.
We discovered that there are always many charging options available from campgrounds, cafes, friendly farmers, e-bike charging stations and even when all else failed from people whose doors we knocked on.When you have to get out of your comfort zone to get your batteries charged it is amazing how many wonderful people you meet who you would otherwise have never spoken to. “On different occasions this led to complete strangers offering us accommodation, meals, showers, coffees, maps, bike servicing and in Ireland a call out was even put out over Facebook for the e-bike community to show us a “real” Irish welcome. The result was a long list of people throughout Ireland who selflessly offered all sorts of assistance. “We have had such an amazing time over the past nine months that we don’t want to stop, we intend to keep pedalling and to continue to promote everything that is great about e-biking.” With thanks to both Gary & Rachel (The e-Bike Cycle Tourists) above for the interview.