France to China Solar Bike Race!

France to China Solar Bike Race!

Lyon-ChinaThe First Tour de France was organized in 1903 the race started in Paris, stopping in Lyon, Marseille, Bordeaux, Nantes to returned to Paris. Also, the race has evolved it remains the most thought out race not only for the challenging course but also the most difficult one for the participants, challenging them physically and mentally. If you are not an avid fan of the Tour de France in bicycle, maybe this one could be the one you would be the most interest about.

In 2010 Florian Bailly was the first solar biker to travel 10,000 km (6,213.7 miles) through 10 countries and the Universal Expo in Shanghai. Florian was inspired by his race, he created The Sun Trip company. “This performance of solar (energy) applied to mobility and cycling is a success for the development of renewable energy,” Sun Trip founder Florian Bailly told AFP.

To promote renewable energy in 2013 Sun Trip a French company started a race from Lyon to Kazakhstan’s capital 8,000 km (4,971 miles).
For the second edition in 2015 Milan Italy to Anatolia Turkey with no assistance, no route just freedom.
In 2017 Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes, the tour was redesigned to be more accessible for everyone. It was aimed to attract people while promoting solar bicycle travel.

Lyon-ChinaThis year edition on the New Silk Roads, the race picked Guangzhou China based on its stand as the world largest emitter of greenhouse gases, but also as the first country to invest on solar energy. The race started on June 15, covering 12,000 km to arrive in Guangzhou late August. Fifty participants from 10 countries aged between 23 to 70 are participating in the race. They have 100 days to reach their destination, along their journey they are sharing their adventures via social media.

The participants are free to choose the route after effectively kicking off their challenge in Chamonix France on June 19th.

The race will only take place during the day for their own safety on the road the participants cannot ride at night. A GPS system will send signal on their bikes when necessary. The participants will move towards their destinations half manually, half powered by solar energy. With assisted solar energy they can ride 200 to 300 km/day (124 – 186 miles/day).

Lyon ChinaAfter 49 days on the road, Belgian Raf van Hulle is the winner of the race. The cyclist rode 12,000 km (7,500 miles). His journey took him across Germany, Ukraine, Russia, then Kazakhstan before riding into China, cycling an average of 270 km daily. Raf struggled through 3,000 km of slopes amid scorching heat in the Gobi Desert, which he had to pedal without solar energy assistance due to the over 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) to avoid overheating his bicycle’s battery. His bicycle has a solar panel in the front and another on a trailer behind, is used for his daily commute.

“I am very happy to have won, but also not to have damaged my bike, which is quite expensive,” van Hulle told AFP.

Lyon-ChinaWith the support of the French and Chinese governments, Florian believes the race could become a regular affair.

If you would like to follow the race Sun Trip

 

Rankings

  1. Raf Van Hulle,Team Huyndai elevator: in 44 days et 19 hours. 100% solar energy.
  2. Mickaël Joguet: in 50 days et 23 hours. 100% solar energy.
  3. Eric Morel, Team MND – Douze Cycles: in 52 days et 20 hours. 100% solar energy.
  4. Stéphane Bertrand (avec Déclic-éco et Photowatt): in 55 days et 23 hours (with a two-day bonus). 100% solar energy.
  5. Herman Segers: in 59 days. 100% solar energy.

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