First three riders complete CW5000 challenge

Three riders have ridden 5,000 miles with Ross Duncan once again the first to hit the distance, doing so in just 72 days.

Over three days in March, three riders completed the CW5000 challenge. All three have made good use of their turbos, with two of them logging all their miles at home. We've spoken to all three of them to find out a little more about what motivated them to get the challenge done so quickly.

Ross Duncan

Date completed: Saturday March 13
Days taken: 72

Ross Duncan was the CW5000's first finisher for the second year in succession as he continues to clock up huge miles online and raise money for good causes (you can donate here). A big chunk of his mileage was amassed when taking part in Doddy Aid, an inter-district challenge that ran through January for My Name'5 Doddie Foundation. During the final week in January Duncan rode 694.8 miles for his team.

Based in Dunfermline, Duncan has said he's not too focused on the numbers this year. Having ridden 21,026 miles in 2020 he probably doesn't need to be. He can often be found riding on Zwift where most of his miles have been done. Only 200 miles have been on the road so far in 2021 while he was doing a reccy for an Everesting attempt. More to come ....

>>>> Think you can ride 5,000 miles in a year? It's never too late to sign up

Baz Morris

Date completed: Sunday March 14
Days taken: 73

Baz Morris went through the 5,000 mile mark on Sunday, March 14, as he passed the front of Buckingham Palace on Zwift. He has completed every mile of the challenge so far on his Tacx Neo smart trainer, using mainly Zwift with the odd excursion in to Road Grand Tours. “I work full time so I’m on the trainer by 6:30am for an hour-and-half." He told us. "Last year I was very structured in my training, but this year a little less so since I started using the Bowie Brevvie pace partner. It’s a relatively small group on there each morning but it can grow to over 30.”

Morris then gets back on the turbo in the evening, either for a structured session or a virtual race. At the weekends he’ll do a more traditional longer ride. 

“I used to do everything I could to avoid training indoors” he explained. “I would commute to my work in London from Harrow and only go on the turbo if the weather was really bad. I had a go on Zwift during the very early days but wasn’t very impressed as it didn’t offer structured training and there were very few people using it at the time.”

As a lifelong cyclist and now a member of the Droitwich CC he is only too aware of some people’s views on whether or not indoor riding constitutes ‘real’ riding. To keep his data as legitimate as possible he weighs in before each session and dual records via his power meter pedals. And rather than stick to flat routes to easily build up the mileage he plans his rides so he always does at least 1,000ft of climbing an hour. Roughly what he would do when riding on the roads around his home near Bristol. 

Having completed the CW5000 last year, he set out in 2021 to ride 1,000 miles a month, a target he’s well ahead of - despite losing a day’s riding when both the smart turbos in the house broke. Without that set back he might have pipped Ross Duncan to the post. 

Morris expects that accumulation of miles to come down a little when he's back out riding on the road. “Touch wood some kind of normality is going to return soon, I’m quite keen to get back out on the road again. That will have an impact though. My commute is 22 miles each way, but on the turbo I’m doing at least two-and-a-half to three hours each day.”

Morris’s wife Jo also rides, their bikes are set up next to each other at home, and they have their eye on a riding holiday in Majorca later in the year if allowed. 

Ride stats
204 hours
235,642ft of elevation
106 mile longest ride
4.2hrs longest ride

Baz took a screen grab as he went through the 5,000 mile mark.

Giles Cudmore

Date completed: Monday March 15
Days taken: 74

Having completed last year’s CW5000 by August, Cudmore set himself a harder target for 2021. “I saw how quickly people did it last year and thought if I can do it by the end of March, that would be a nice target. I knew how much I rode every day when commuting, and thought it wouldn’t be too much of a step up to get to 70 miles a day.

By deciding on that target, committing to it and raising money for the Alzheimer’s Society (you can donate here), Cudmore found it relatively easy to knuckle down and get on with it. He quickly got ahead of the target, to give himself a buffer should he get ill or have to take a day or two of, eventually completing the challenge on March 15 having packed in 594 miles in the week before. 

Like Morris he has done all his riding this year on the turbo, recording his data from his Wahoo turbo, via the Wahoo app straight to Strava. It’s why all his data on there has no maps or images from virtual worlds. 

“I'd had Zwift for years, but I got more and more bored of it. I could have ridden the same routes as they're easy. But what’s the point in that? I actually cancelled it half way through and have been going through the GCN documentaries just to have something on in the background. I tried Tacx and RGT, and might go back to Zwift at some point.”

Cudmore has so far raised £360 in memory of his mother, an armchair fan of the sport. “She loved cycling and watching the Tour de France."

"She always had a notepad next to her knitting. Kilometres meant nothing to her, so she’d see 15km [to go] or whatever distance and have to work it out in her head then write it down.” His brother raced, while his father often drove the lead car at the Milk Race when it was in the Lincolnshire area. He has photos of him has a baby sat in the front of the car. 

He has now ridden every day since January 23, 2020, and to clock the miles up this year he’s done two sessions a day. His mileage drastically increased last year when he was furloughed, now he’s doing some work from home. “I have done work while on the turbo. Once I had a call from my boss - he never calls me! I had to run and find my phone and try and calm my breathing down.”

The choice to ride on the turbo wasn’t due to any fears riding on the roads during the pandemic, more about efficiency. "I'm not a great sleeper, so I’m usually up at 5am, have breakfast then on the turbo for 6am and do two-and-a-half hours before work. Then I can do another couple of hours later in the day.”

Ride stats
Avg rides / week 14
Avg distance / week 479 miles
Avg time / week 26hrs 21min