You know when you get on your bike and imagine setting off into an adventure all over the World? That feeling of being able to go anywhere, anytime, its something most bikers feel when riding their motorcycles. But some of us take that desire for adventure to another level!
That’s the case of South African rider Andrew Thabo Russell.
In last January he rode a KTM 1190 Adventure R from Cairo, in Egypt, to Cape Town in South Africa. That’s a trip of 11.000 km onboard his KTM, and Andrew not only completed the journey but he also managed to cover that distance in a new record time of just 7 days, 18 hours and 52 minutes, shattering the old record by five days, set by Swiss rider Urs Pedraita in 2016.
Andrew Russell had tried before to complete this record attempt adventure through Africa, but on his previous two attempts he had to quit.
The first attempt, in 2015, his trip was cut short because his passport was stolen when he was crossing the border from Ethiopia to Kenya, and on his second run, after just 2000 km covered, and in the middle of the Nubian desert, the bike suffered a broken chain that managed to completely disintegrate the gearbox, making it impossible to finish the record attempt.
This year he did manage to finish the run in record time, but Andrew had some problems.
The journey was not without its challenges, including a front tyre blowout and subsequent rim damage, hitting a Kudu in northern Kenya, and having a terribly close call with a truck in Zambia, while sleep and concentration fatigue were battles at the end of every day.
At 34 years old, Andrew Russell finally managed to break the record and believes this was due to the ever growing and better infrastructures in Africa: “Infrastructure in Africa is improving dramatically,” he said. “There are now only about 250 kilometers of untarred surface remaining on the iconic Great North Road, allowing riders to use bigger, faster machines, and there’s a new land border between Egypt and Sudan that sidesteps a slow ferry ride up Lake Nasser”.