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    Portrait of a young man in his cycling jersey in front of yellow and pink posters.
    Guilherme Kardel has been cycling since the age of 5. Between his first BMX and his ride in Paris-Brest-Paris, he estimates he has covered more than 145,000 km!

    90 h | Paris-Brest-Paris

    90 hours…
    It’s about 4 km for a snail.
    It’s 60 times around the Earth for the International Space Station.
    It’s also the time limit for cycling 1,230 km…

    The Paris-Brest-Paris cycle race was created in 1891 by Pierre Giffard. However, the lack of professional participants put an end to the competition in 1951. The original spirit has survived to the present day, thanks to Paris-Brest-Paris randonneur. The numbers speak for themselves, as more and more people take part in this major global event.

    Crowd watching the peloton of cyclists a few seconds after the start.
    Over 70 different countries take part every four years! © Roberta Kardel

    Thanks to the Warmshowers community of bicycle tourists, we met one of these two-wheeled enthusiasts in Brasília. Since the age of 5, Guilherme Kardel has been cycling. From his first BMX to his ride in Paris-Brest-Paris (PBP), he estimates that he has covered more than 145,000 km!

    His first attempt at PBP, however, was unsuccessful. “In 2007, I rode too slowly, averaging 13 km/h. After sleeping three hours in three days, I was exhausted. I took a short nap that stretched to 7 hours. After that, it was hard to cover the last 220 km in 9 hours,” says Guilherme. 

    His second attempt in 2011 was a success, thanks to good preparation and perseverance, with a time of 89 hours! Christophe Bocquet was the fastest in this edition, clocking just 44 hours and 13 minutes. Twenty-five hours less than in 1891! It has to be said that in 120 years, the world of cycling has been turned upside down. On the other hand, the philosophy remains focused on a ride, not a race performance. The rules are very clear. “Regardless of the time achieved, no brevet will be homologated in less than 43 h 51 (maximum average of 28 km/h)”.

    If the 10,000-meter climb of the Paris-Brest-Brest randonneur interests you, the next editions will take place in 2027 and 2031. On average, 80% of registrants finish the ride. Average age of cyclists is 47. And only 6% of participants are women. Try Paris-Brest-Paris and you’ll love it! Canadian Deirdre Arscott has taken part nine times in the last 32 years. In fact, she holds the record for most participation in this long-distance cycling event. Speaking of records, Germany’s Friedhelm Lixenfeld is the first octogenarian to cover 1,230 km in under 90 hours. Truly inspiring!

    Many thanks Guilherme for your warm welcome to Brasília and for sharing your passion for cycling with us!

    Three young men on bicycles smile at the photographer near a crowd.
    Guilherme (left) with two fellow Brazilians: Edson Behenck and Luiz Lazary © Roberta Kardel

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