For Gregory Lewyllie, the end of Sun Trip 2018!

Curiously, for several days, the GPS trace of Gregory Lewyllie did not progress. Was it a time of rest? Well no, Gregory was the victim of a bike fall, here’s what he just published on his Facebook account:
“Over the past two weeks, I have enjoyed my gratitude throughout Laos.” It was almost too good to be true… Just before the final farewells and on the way to Cambodia, fate unfortunately struck. I lost control of my bike on a narrow path along the Mekong, and I fell 10 meters lower. I broke my right shoulder! After a lot of thought about the situation, I decided to temporarily stop the trip and go home. I have stored all my equipment here and I hope to return in 2019 to continue the trip. I am comforted at the idea that it could have been much worse and that this is not the end of the solar Bamboe bike trip. »
Best wishes for a good recovery to Grégory Lewyllie!

The video is impressive: we understand the height of his fall by seeing the inhabitants recover his bike. It is easy to imagine that the consequences of this accident could have been much worse:

Gregory Lewyllie still on the way

Gone in June on his bamboo solar bike, Gregory Lewyllie continues his journey through Laos. He attended for a week at a Buddhist festival in Luang Prabang (World Heritage of Humanity – Unesco).
On the eve of November, he is crossing the province of Xieng Khouang and his GPS track shows that he takes time to discover the country.

Solar bikes made in Africa!

Spotted on Twitter: Since 2014, a company (NGO?) is developing light autonomous electric vehicles for Africa. It has deployed electric bikes and scooters, 3-and 4-wheeled vehicles, and charging stations, under leasing, rental, Pay as you go conditions.
His efforts are now focused on the development of environmentally friendly and affordable solar powered vehicles for isolated rural areas outside of the electricity grid in Africa.

The site:

A solar bike at the car show in Paris!

This year, the Sun Trip was invited to the 2018 motor show in the part for vehicule of future. The challenge was to present to the public the diversity of vehicles, electric and solar, emerging. This was the occasion for Florian Bailly, the creator of the Sun Trip, to show an example of solar bike, the type of those who have travelled this summer the 12000 km that separate Lyon from the city of Canton in China (Guangzhou).

Daniele Gonano presented the solar recumbent bike he used in June for the prologue of the Sun Trip 2018. He was accompanied by Paul Bermejo who participated in Sun Trip 2015 and 2017 [ find out more about this bike ].
Daniele's bike has even done the honors of the press:

© Charlie Hebdo-N ° 1368 – October 10th 2018

Sun Trip 2018 participants awards

Françoise Denel, the dean of the Sun Trip, was honoured with the Public Award. She was acclaimed for her enthusiasm and optimism in all circumstances, her benevolent and poetic look at the regions crossed.

Jack Butler received the Jury Award that rewards the adventurer who knew how to achieve the sun Trip in recharge 100% solar, while communicating best on his adventure. The organization team particularly appreciated Jack’s talent for making videos (sometimes even with the use of a drone), as well as his strong presence on social networks.

Youssef El Haouass and Mohamed Said Kaan have received the  “Coup de coeur 2018” award by the organization team. Together they formed a welded duo, capable of an exceptional performance: the design and construction by Youssef of a solar tandem adapted to the handicap, the courage of Mohamed Said to embark on this adventure despite his handicap. To move the mountains!

Gregory continues his journey to Laos!

Gregory Lewyllie illustrates here his temperament as a great traveller : not only does he make a France-china journey on the silk roads, on a solar bike, but he does not stop in Guangzhou, the intended destination of the Sun Trip. He goes further!
As his GPS continues to function, we can see that he continues his crossing of China and that he now arrives at the border of Laos.
He left Lyon, in France, 118 days ago, almost 4 months!

Gregory Lewyllie continues his journey, but where is he going?

Gregory Lewyllie did not arrive in Guangzhou within the allotted time of 100 days, probably because of his long exploration of the silk roads in Uzbekistan. In the days following the arrival of Michael Polak in Guangzhou, Gregory's GPS began to draw a straight track: we thought that he had decided to take the train to Guangzhou.

But in fact, he went to Kunming (昆明市) in Yunnan province, and there, he resumed his solar bike journey. Today, he is in Pu'er (普洱市), a city 200 km far from the Chinese border, close to Laos, Burma and Vietnam.
But where did he plan to go?
The future will tell us…

The Sun Trip 2018 is over!

From Lyon to Guangzhou in China, more than 12000 km, some 30 countries crossed, the adventurers of Sun Trip 2018 have written a page of history of solar ecomobility.
It was an extraordinary adventure for all of them and for all those who followed them, thanks to their stories and photos published on the Internet.

Thank you to the organizers for making us live this adventure!

See you in July 2019 for a new Sun Trip Tour!

Final ranking of Sun Trip 2018

     Nom   Prénom    Solaire  ArrivéeDuréePays
Raf Van Hulle
100% solaire
Mickaël Joguet
100% solaire
Éric Morel
100% solaire
Stéphane Bertrand
100% solaire
Herman Segers
100% solaire
6ème ex
Jack Butler
100% solaire
6ème ex
Laurent Souchet
100% solaire
Auguste Colle
hors challenge
Camille Colle
hors challenge
Romain Neauport
100% solaire
9ème ex
Daniel Jenni
100% solaire
9ème ex
Dirk Huyghe
100% solaire
Peter Helsen
100% solaire
Thierry Rassat
100% solaire
Françoise Denel
hors challenge
Michael Polak
100% solaire
Catherine Pozzobon
hors challenge
Didier Pozzobon
hors challenge
Youssef El Haouass
hors challenge
Mohamed Saïd Jeberi
hors challenge
François Médalle
hors challenge
Gilles Coural
hors challenge
J-Claude Viguier
hors challenge
Corinne Courvalin
hors challenge

Several participants did not reach Canton:
  N°         Nom   Prénom  RetourDuréeDistance parcouruePays
Eymeric Thuliez
à vélo solaire
102j9100 kmFR
Juergen Burkholz
à vélo solaire
101j10400 kmDE
Patrice Plozner
à vélo solaire
80j9200 kmFR
Paul Baudry
rapatriement53j6750 kmFR
Lionnel Serra
rapatriement49j6700 kmFR
Alain Viguier
rapatriement45j5500 kmFR
Bernard & Yann Cauquil
rapatriement34j5800 kmFR
Justin Lemire-Elmore & Anne-Sophie Rodet
mariage au Canada !33j5000 kmCA
Michel Bamps
rapatriement24j3500 kmBE

These SunTripers did not arrive at the goal for various reasons:

  • some suntripers felt mid-term that they could not get to Canton within the 100-day time limit, they chose to go home by solar bike and still traveled between 9000 and 10000 km, which remains a good performance,
  • others chose repatriation either because of technical problems, or for reasons of physical fitness not allowing them to face the 12000 km France-China,
  • Justin and Anne-Sophie went to Canada to get married,
  • finally, the great traveler Gregory Lewyllie, who favors discovery at speed (he has long explored Uzbekistan), has not managed to catch up to arrive in Canton in 100 days. But he continues his trip to Laos, Thailand, his trip lasts 4 months (120 days).

Crossing Kazakhstan on a sailing bike!

Yes, I concede, this article did not quite fit on this blog, it does not talk about solar bike. But as soon as I saw it on twitter, I did not resist the desire to relay this adventure that values another form of ecomobility, the sailing bike! Crossing Kazakhstan to Kyrgyzstan with the steppe ship @asiatrek, great!
And then the sun plays a role in the formation of the winds, right?

For more information, a very complete video:

“Coup de coeur” award to Youssef and Mohamed

The organization team decided to award a "coup de coeur" 2018 to the Moroccan duo Youssef El Haouass and Mohamed said Jberi. In fact, their participation was a challenge to the administrative realities and the physical constraints. Their performance was at the height of the hopes brought!

First of all, Youssef managed to design and build the first solar tandem adapted to handicap and able to travel over a very long distance.
And on the other hand, Mohamed said accepted the crazy bet to embark on this journey France-china, despite his handicap.
Together they formed a welded duo, able to overcome all obstacles, including some administrative complications. Together they inspired the world and grew the adventure of Sun Trip.

This performance is part of the continuity of those of other SunTripers, since the first edition in 2013. The solar bike is a way to push the limits and it is an honor for the Sun Trip to be the vector of such a humanist message.
Bravo again to Youssef and Mohamed Said who will be celebrated on their return to Tangier in Morocco.

Michael Polák is in Guangzhou!!!

Michael Polák arrived with great emotion this morning in Guangzhou, concluding this incredible 2018 edition of the Sun Trip, after a 106-day journey! He was greeted by 5 SunTripers and Angélique, from the organization team of the Sun Trip, under the admiring gaze of a Chinese audience present en masse on the arrival site on this official holiday day.

Bravo to Michael for his choice of daring itineraries in the mountains of Europe and in the Highlands of China.
Bravo also for having managed to make this journey in 100% solar mode on an original bike that he built entirely himself.

The Sun Trip 2018 officially ends today after 106 days of Adventure. Out of 36 participants, 24 will have been able to reach the finish, including 13 adventurers in 100% solar Mode. The adventure spread its joy and message on the ecomobility throughout the 12 000 km road.

Françoise Denel arrived in Guangzhou !

Françoise crossed the finish line today, October 1, 2018, wich is Chinese National Day, in a bright sun and in front of a large crowd. This seventy-year-old woman traveled 103 days from France to reach Guangzhou.
The dean wins the Sun Trip 2018 Audience Award!

Françoise Denel soon in Guangzhou !

Françoise Denel, the dean of the Sun Trip (70 years), is expected to reach the finish tomorrow. Florian Bailly, founder of the Sun Trip, and Angélique Galvaing, project leader 2018, went to meet him today, in the midst of rice fields. They found a radiant, optimistic woman, source of curiosity and respect for our Chinese friends, for all…

Corinne Courvalin arrived in Guangzhou

Corinne Courvalin, from Team France Passion, has reached the goal! The Vice-dean of Sun Trip 2018 offers a night-time arrival, the first of this unusual edition. His journey has lasted 100 days.

Corinne will not be classified in the solar challenge because, to reach destination in 100 days, she had to make a part of the journey in China.

The Sun Trip adventure according to Jean-Claude Viguier

Jean-Claude Viguier delivers his vision of the adventure of the Sun Trip, a human adventure above all, as can be read in these lines:
« Few adventurers have approached the sun trip as a competition. Through this comment I do not want to obscure the extraordinary performances of the SunTripers that have permanently marked their footprint solar mobility. The meeting with others, the sharing of values, the exchange are more important in my opinion than any timekeeping performance. The objective of this project was to demonstrate that solar energy was able to achieve very beautiful things without any environmental consequences. Nevertheless, we do not travel 12000 km without a thorough and long physical and psychological preparation. The trainings carried out in all the times allowed us to forge a steel mind. The stresses imposed on the winter outings have strengthened us physically and psychologically. There was still uncertainty and not least: how the organism would support several hundred km per week, for three months, without other days of rest than those imposed by weather, shipping or technological vagaries. Physiologically our organism sends us signals that are as many messages as we have to interpret. For my part for two years the internal faces of my knees are painful. Many specialists have "prescribed" me the end of my sports competitions. That there is no challenge without sacrifices. Sixty physiotherapy sessions were needed to alleviate my pain and allow me to support 150 km training on a 1000 to 1200 km/month. Even though my pain persists the temptation to go at the end of this adventure has never been altered.

From the moment I met Mohamed, Youssef, Paul, Françoise and I spent I drew in their mental strength what I still needed to meet this challenge. Most of them, except Youssef, have a physical deficit, caused by illness or accident, or have undergone significant operations. They deliberately excluded from their vocabulary the word failure. They replaced it with the words Joy of Life, will, success, generosity… These are probably the most beautiful meetings made during this summer among the competitors. I do not mean of course the group of Tarnis Cathy, Francois, Didier, Gilles who have become true friends and whose values of humanity are equal only the courage they have shown to overcome all the difficulties of this journey. Some of the anonymous people who met during the adventure will surprise me with their generosity. Knowing nothing about us or us on them, we shared short moments of happiness during which we received beautiful lessons of life. Self-transcendence is a subjective notion. In the most hostile part of the world, Mike Horn travelled thousands of kilometers in appalling conditions to the North Pole, often putting his life at risk. I've never heard him say "I'm putting an end to this adventure". »

« Mohamed Said and Youssef are in my opinion, the same caliber as Mike Horn, and are undoubtedly the two greatest adventurers of the Sun trip 2018. They never consider ending this project even if the weather is sparked on them. Youssef studied in France and, back in Tangier, he climbs his manufacturing workshop, designs and manufactures several trikes. Mohamed who no longer has the use of his legs contact him so that he makes him a gear adapted to his handicap. Mohamed embodies the joy of living, he accepts his handicap very well even if he had the use of his legs at birth. It was no longer necessary to Youssef, convinced by this strong personality, to imagine the project of tandem Trike. There was only one step to be taken to get these two up to the challenge of the Sun trip. Their minds are out of standard and their duo is endowed with an extraordinary complementarity that allowed them to go at the end of the adventure. Youssef has a mechanical engineering background. With a limited amount of resources, he creates his own workshop, with computer tools and design software. Very quickly he imagines, models, and analyzes the behavior of his solutions in materials resistance. It turns out that they are terribly effective. Its trike has impressive stability. The structure of its chassis is designed to collect the efforts to deform and guarantee a very appreciable flexibility by the cyclists. A major step towards industrialization could be envisaged, which would be a well-deserved outcome. Even if the market is restricted the prototypes imagined by Youssef deserve to be marketed. If only to meet the needs of people with reduced mobility. It is in my opinion the two heroes of the Sun trip 2018. If the price of self-transcendence and generosity existed, they would be the indisputable winners. »

Where are the last suntripers?

Two women are the closest to the goal:
-Corinne Courvalin about 100km from Guangzhou,
-Françoise Denel is less than 400 km away.
Michael Polak is further away, currently at 1000 km from Guangzhou. And Gregory Lewyllie is the furthest: 2000 km!

Thierry : 12th 100% solar cyclist arrived in Canton!

Under the dumbfounded gaze of our Chinese friends, Thierry Rassat arrived in Guangzhou (Canton) This Wednesday, September 26th at 11:45 a.m. local time. Thierry had long ago programmed to arrive after 99 days of travel, a symbolic figure, which allowed him to take the time and to enjoy the most of his journey France-China.

Hosted by 8 other participants and by fans, Thierry takes the 12th place of the solar challenge. During his trip, he did not use any other means of transport other than his bicycle and he was able to operate only in solar recharge.
A nice example what can be a solar trip in the sun trip!

7 cyclists arrived today in Guangzhou!

7 adventurers arrived today in Canton, here they are Catherine and Didier, François and Gilles, Youssef and Mohamed Saïd, as well as Jean-Claude. They are at destination after 98 days of a trip that will have led them to cross different countries, according to routes that they have shared in part:

  • Catherine and Didier Pozzobon : Ukraine, Russia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, China.
  • François Médalle and Gilles Coural: Ukraine, Russia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, China.
  • Youssef El Haouass and Mohamed Saïd Jeberi: Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, China.
  • Jean-Claude Viguier: Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, China.

Special congratulations to the Moroccan duo : Youssef & Mohamed Saïd. They carried out an unusual adventure on a tandem entirely built by themselves.

These 7 suntripers are not classified in the challenge 100% solar because, to get to destination in less than 100 days, they had to make by train part of the trip to China. Emotion was strong when they sang national and regional anthems :