A CYCLIST has embarked on the biggest challenge of his life.

Paul Spencer, 29, originally from Pantymwyn, is hoping to become the fastest man to cycle across America.

Paul, a former St Richard Gwyn High School pupil who now lives in the States, is attempting to bike north to south, then west to east in just 44 days, smashing the current Guinness World Record of 444 days.

Speaking from the family home in Georgia, proud mum Miriam told the Leader:
“His love of cycling, mountains and all things outdoor stemmed from his many happy years living in Pantymwyn.

“Since moving to America, he has never settled and is constantly travelling and setting himself new challenges.

“Earlier this year he worked the Winter Olympics in Whistler and was especially motivated by the athletic determination of the paralympic athletes.”

Paul set out from Washington on July 8 and made it to San Diego on the Mexican border in just 16 days.

He climbed through the Colorado Rocky Mountains two days and has just left Kansas in the mid-west.

He plans to arrive at City Hall in New York on August 21.

The family, including Paul’s dad Jan, 55, former mill manager at Coleshill Mill in Flint, and siblings Matthew, 24 and Marie, 27, moved to the States 13 years ago.

Miriam, 54, a former teacher at St David’s Primary School, Mold, said: “He is riding well over 100 miles a day through some tortuous weather and terrain.”

Proceeds from the ride are expected to reach £15,000 and will go to the Boys and Girls Club of America, the Lupus Foundation and Disability Snowsports UK.

Go to www.yeshesmad.com to sponsor Paul and track his progress.