The challenge of cycling 6,000km from Nordkapp to Europa Point
A 16-year-old Finnish cyclist Pessi Länsirinne has made it to the Rock, having cycled 6,000 km from Nordkapp in Norway.
Mr Länsirinne arrived yesterday afternoon at 4pm. Coming across the border the cyclist lifted his arm in the air in triumph.
However, his journey was still not over as he continued to make his way to Europa Point.
“I feel really good, it’s been seven weeks and it’s good to be here,” he told the Chronicle moments after arriving on the Rock.
However, his cousin was with him for the first four days in Norway and then his godfather cycled with him for two days in Finland. He was on his own until he reached Barcelona where he met two Norwegian cyclists who were making their way to Morocco and travelled down to the area with them. He crossed into Gibraltar unaccompanied.
Mr Länsirinne turns 17 in September, he believes he is the “youngest person who's ever rode a distance like this alone.”
Initially his parents “didn’t believe I was going to do this. Then I starting buying all the gear and then they started to believe I was actually going to do this.”
“They have been supportive ever since,” he added.
The trip began on June 7th, with Mr Länsirinne then estimating the journey would take him two months to complete.
“It [the journey] has been easier than I thought it would be,” he said.
Adding that his, favourite part of the journey is “this”, arriving on the Rock.
The hardest part of his journey has been the mountains, not necessarily the steepness of the peaks but the intense heat and lack of wind during the summer months of these inland areas.
“It was more mentally challenging than physically challenging.”
Tomorrow Mr Länsirinne will cycle to Tarifa, before getting the bus back to Malaga and a flight home, shipping his bike in the process.