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Last Updated: Wednesday, 25 May, 2005, 14:14 GMT 15:14 UK
World biking couple's record hope
Simon and Monika Newbound in Tallinn (Pictures courtesy of Simon and Monika Newbound)
Simon and Monika Newbound have been married for 10 years
A motorcycling husband and wife are confident they have broken an endurance record for their round the world trip.

Simon and Monika Newbound took three years and a day to complete their overland circumnavigation from west to east on their motorbikes.

Their journey, a distance of 168,000 kilometres, extended from Ireland to North America, visiting 54 countries.

They expect the confirmation of their success from Guinness within two weeks.

Mr Newbound, 40, from Abergele said the trip was a chance to combine the chance to challenge world records, travel the world and raise money for the Royal Manchester Children's Hospital.

He said they had been welcomed all over the world, made friends and experienced new cultures and cuisine.

  • In Kazakhstan they were served horse testicles and sheep's eyes at a tradtional banquet.

  • In Rome, in September 2004, they were blessed along with another 10,000 people by Pope John Paul II.

  • They drove through every state in the United States and every province in Canada.

  • They visited the Great Wall of China, as well as Cuba and the Middle East.

For 30-year-old Mrs Newbound, one of the highlights of the epic trip was their visit to Mongolia.

Originally from the Czech Republic, she speaks Russian and was able to communicate with the older generation in Mongolia.

Simon Newbound in Iran (Pictures courtesy of Simon and Monika Newbound)
Monika found driving in Iran quite dangerous

Before the journey, Monika had no experience of long-distance biking and had passed her test after only four days of lessons.

"Travelling on the good European road prepared me - but driving in Iran was difficult because the biggest bikes there were 200cc and they weren't prepare to deal with the fast BMW bikes we were riding on the roads.

"They were missing us by small distances.

According to Mr Newbound, having been married for 10 years the journey strengthened their relationship.

"We've got a great respect for each other, at the beginning of the trip we didn't know what each other's roles would be.

"But as we went along Monika would maybe put the tent up while I would start making the food - we know each other's strength and weaknesses."

Catching up

Meanwhile having arrived home they rode to the BMF Show at Peterborough on May 21, are planning the next leg of their journey. and over the summer are trying to secure sponsors.

The couple who are currently staying in Abergele with Simon's family, intend to break another world record.

Mrs Newbound is to visit, in one continuous journey more than 102 countries - she has currently visited 54 countries.

Both also intended to visit all seven continents in one continuous journey.

Being back in north Wales the pair are catching up with family, friends and all the news they've missed recently.

"It's great to be able to understand what people are saying - it's only two days ago I found out that Tony Blair had been re-elected!"


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