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Friday, 29 March, 2002, 19:07 GMT
Saddle-sore from Stoke to Singapore
The cyclists reach Singapore
The end of the road for the adventurers
A British man and a group of strangers he recruited to join him on an 11,000-mile bike ride have arrived in Singapore nine months after setting out.

The four men led by Andy Ganner from Stoke-on-Trent met through the Lonely Planet travel website.

Toby Wilsdon, from Hassocks, near Brighton, Rory James, from London and American Scott Zentack set off on the marathon ride via Mongolia after replying to an appeal for cycling companions on the website.

During their travels they over-indulged in vodka with Russian secret policemen, had a fight with a drunk-driver and came face-to-face with wolves.

Trip leader Andy chose Singapore as the destination because it was the most southern part of the Asian continent that can be reached without getting on a boat.

'Bloody nose'

The original four were joined by Canadian Sephane Beaudoin in Beijing.

Mr James, a design engineer who went on the adventure to get from behind his desk, said: "The trip has been a roller coaster ride of amazing things.

"We have crossed 22 countries and it has been a real eye opener.

What's next for the adventurers?
Andy Ganner will write a book about the trip
Toby Wilsdon wants to teach English in Taiwan or Japan
Rory James is going to Australia via Timor
Scott Zentack plans to cycle the entire length of the Americas
Sephane Beaudoin is returning to ice-breaking in the Arctic
"One of the funniest things was the SSB - the successor to the KGB - getting us drunk on vodka and then letting us drive their cars.

"On another occasion Scott was knocked off his bike by a drunk driver who then demanded compensation for a broken wing mirror.

"The driver ended up with bloody nose for his troubles."

The group saw wolves as they crossed Siberia and thought they heard tigers while crossing the Thai-Burmese border.

They also cycled through all kinds of weather from 40C heat in Ukraine to minus 15C in the Gobi Desert in Mongolia.

Decent pint

Mr Beaudoin - who is a captain on an ice-breaking ship in the Arctic - missed the start of the trek because of injuries he sustained in a car crash.

The cyclists at Asia's most southerly point
Saying goodbye at Asia's most southerly point
The five arrived in Singapore on Thursday and now plan to go their separate ways.

Andy Ganner said he was looking forward to getting home to see his parents in Staffordshire and getting a decent pint of beer in a country pub.

He said: "The trip has been absolutely wonderful and there is no possible way we can exaggerate it.

"From day one we have stuck together and we have not had one argument."

Click here for more from Stoke
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