Cyclist Beats Train On 170 Mile Journey After He Couldn’t Take Bike On Board

Nobody likes to lose a bet but when there's pizza at stake it would be doubly destroying which is why 28-year-old James Owers took this challenge very seriously indeed.

When James booked train tickets for him and his girlfriend to travel from Edinburgh to Inverness, he forgot to add their bikes.

Luckily they were able to get girlfriend Deena's bike on without too many issues, but there was no space for James to fit his on as well.

Won't be needing that ticket. Credit: Imgur/James Owers
Won't be needing that ticket. Credit: Imgur/James Owers

Virgin Trains offered to box his bike up and store it but instead he decided to set himself a little challenge and Deena introduced a rather worthwhile incentive - pizza.

Well if anything is going to make us take on a mammoth task like that it's the food of champs.

Speaking to, James said: "I love my bike so I didn't want to stuff it in a box. We needed to get to Inverness for the Friday evening as we were meeting Deena's dad the next morning.

"Virgin told us there were no bikes spaces to begin with but we eventually got hers a space, and they offered for me to put mine in a box and store it in the guards' compartment.

"This would have been undue hassle for the poor guard because I would have to box it up and we didn't know if it would fit and it just would have ended up being too much hassle.

"I thought it would be a bit of an adventure to cycle to Scotland and Deena bet me a pizza that I couldn't beat the train."

Credit: Imgur/James Owers
Credit: Imgur/James Owers

James, originally from London, set off from Edinburgh at 6.15am and arrived in Inverness at 7.30pm, meaning he was in the saddle for more than 12 hours. And here I am complaining about a 30 minute spin session.

If you're wondering what sort of pathetically slow train Deena was on for it to crawl through Scotland in 12 hours - don't worry any longer.

Deena's train left the capital at 4:34pm and pulled into Inverness station at 8:15pm. It should have arrived at 8:04pm.

And James was already on the platform waiting for his girlfriend with plenty of time to spare. What a gent.

But it wasn't all just work and no play (believe it or not) because he did manage to fit in some visits to the distilleries along the way as well. This is proof that James is our kind of LAD.

Take the 12 hour cycle out of the equation and you've got yourself a buddy to complete challenges with. Only of the drinking kind though.

He said: "I pretty much stopped at every distillery I came across, it would have been very rude not to have stopped and have a dram." That it would.

James continued: "I could have probably fit one more in, but I wanted to beat the train - the pizza was at stake!"

Credit: Imgur/James Owers
Credit: Imgur/James Owers

Reminiscing on his journey, he said: "I stopped off at a distillery and it had closed, so I asked an old man where I could buy some. He directed me to 'the last house on the right'.

"So I knocked said house and was greeted by Gill from Tomatin and explained my situation and she popped inside. When she returned she produced a bottle and steadfastly refused to take my money.

"I think this shows strangers can be just fantastically kind, so long as you've done something utterly insane."

He added: "Once I got to the train station I felt really good, and I think it's because when I arrived I knew I was waiting on a pizza.

Credit: Imgur/James Owers
Credit: Imgur/James Owers

"The whole journey took about 13 and quarter hours and I was on the bike for about 12 hours of this."

Despite his impressive accomplishment, James is determined that people know it's Deena who is the real hero.

He told "I do want to point out that Deena is the one who is doing a good thing and raising money for such an amazing cause."

James and Deena. Credit: James Owers/Twitter
James and Deena. Credit: James Owers/Twitter

Deena and her dad are currently training to cycle 300 miles from London to Paris in July to raise money for mental health charity MIND.

So far, the pair have managed to reach their target of £3,500($4,650) and are hoping to continue smashing it.

If you would like to sponsor Deena, click here.

Featured Image Credit: Imgur/James Owers

Rebecca Shepherd

Rebecca Shepherd is a Journalist at LADbible. She graduated from the University of Central Lancashire with a First Class BA in Journalism. Becky previously worked as Chief Reporter at Cavendish Press, supplying news and feature stories to national newspapers and women's magazines.

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