A Scottish cyclist has set off from Aberdeen as he attempts to break a world record just months after suffering horrific injuries in a car crash.
Josh Quigley fractured his spine and pelvis in two places and broke his elbow, shoulder and four ribs just three months ago in a smash in Dubai.
The Livingston man, who has now set off from the north-east on his journey, was confined to a hospital bed and his injuries led to his eventual Arthritis diagnosis.
He hopes his miraculous recovery and subsequent world record cycle will inspire millions who are affected with the condition.
Setting off from Westhill yesterday, he hopes he can also raise £10,000 after dedicating his week long ride to Arthritis Action.
With Australian pro-cyclist Jack Thompson having set a record of 2,177 miles in a week of riding, Mr Quigley will have to cycle an average of 320 miles a day to break it.
With that lofty goal in mind, he will be cycling four laps of an 80-mile route each day.
Riding between Aberdeen and the Cairngorms on a route that will span Peterculter, Banchory, Aboyne, Ballater, and Balmoral Castle, he will take in some of the north-east’s most spectacular landscapes before finishing on May 3.
Riding at 18mph for 18 hours a day, all without stopping even to use the toilet, he will be assisted by a team who will help feed him as he rides.
He will burn off around 15,000 calories each day during the challenge, managing only a few hours sleep before setting off again.
It is not the first time that Mr Quigley has overcome near insurmountable odds to complete a record-setting cycle.
In 2019 he was struck by a car in a near-fatal 70mph accident during a “round the world” cycle challenge.
He went on to recover from his injuries, and just nine months later set a record for cycling the North Coast 500.
As a thank you, the 28-year-old used that record attempt to raise over £5,000 for the Baylor Scott and White Medical Centre in Temple, Texas, where he received life-saving intensive care treatment and then rehabilitation.
Before setting off on his latest journey, Mr Quigley said: “I never imagined that just 12 months after that life-threatening accident in America, I would find myself hospitalised again after a 40mph crash whilst winter training in Dubai.
“To bounce back from a major accident and set a record once is a great story.
“But to do it twice in the space of 18 months, and get my first Guinness World Record… That will be pretty special, and that is exactly what I plan on doing.”
The world record for the greatest distance cycled in a week (unpaced) has been broken three times in the last five years.
Aberdeen’s Lord Provost, Barney Crockett, added: “This is a tremendous world record attempt by Josh, and we welcome him to Aberdeen as part of his journey.
“Arthritis Action is a fantastic organisation and a very good cause — and we wish Josh all the very best of luck for his cycle and raising £10,000 for the charity.”
Shantel Irwin, chief executive of Arthritis Action, said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with Josh for this world record-breaking attempt.
“There are over 10 million people in the UK who have arthritis – it is the leading cause of pain and disability nationwide, and can affect people at any age, even young children.
“We believe that Josh’s work will help and inspire others to see the potential within themselves and live a more active life.”
A Guinness World Records adjudicator will officially confirm the record at Braemar Highland Games Park.
David Geddes, president of the Braemar Royal Highland Society, said : “We look forward to welcoming Josh to the home of the Braemar Gathering.
“The games park is the perfect setting to complete his journey. There have been many records broken here on Gathering Day over the years, and we hope this fact provides him with inspiration.
“We wish Josh every success and hope his name can be added to the history books in keeping with our tradition of breaking sporting records.”
Aberdeen University director of leadership programmes, Neil McLennan, who taught Mr Quigley at school, added: “Josh is an inspiration to many — dedicated, resilient and empathetic to others causes, he is the epitome of what we want young people to aspire to.”