Steven Abraham lives in Milton Keynes.
He rode his first 100 miles aged 13 and that’s probably what got the ball rolling. He began to hide pocket money away to fund his long rides in school holidays. Travelling much further away from home than his parents would allow, he had to leave after his parents left for work and be back home before them, or his bike would be locked in the garage for the rest of the school holiday!
He soon joined the CTC Herts DA, as he lived near St Albans then. He was one of the regulars who turned up for Sunday clubruns and soon got a taste for leading them, the longer and hillier the better.
By the time he was 16 he led his infamous clubrun around the outside of the M25, circumnavigating London. He was the only one who turned up and it turned out to be 270 miles. It took 17 hours to complete the not so flat route which included Leith Hill and Box Hill (as featured in the 2012 Olympics). Navigation was tricky.
That was probably the last straw for the CTC Herts DA, so Steve was told about an organisation called Audax UK. He joined straight away and rode their benchmark Super Randonneur Series in his first year.
Later that year, he rode the Icknield RC 12hr to set a junior 12hr record for the Lampard Road Club. This was not long after his first solo tour, where he rode over 1000 miles in a week, taking in as many of Britain’s toughest climbs as he could find.
In 1994, at the age of 19, he went on to amass the most Audax points achieved by a junior. ('Junior' was under 21 then, but has subsequently been changed to under 18) During that year, he rode AUK’s longest 'permanent' event, The Grand Triangle which could be started anywhere and went via Dover, Land’s End, Durness, and John O' Groats, then back home. A total of 3400km (2100 miles). Senior AUK members worried about one so young riding so many miles.
1995 was his first Paris-Brest-Paris 1200km(750 miles). He also discovered the one true way of cycling and began riding a fixed wheel bike on Audax events, including a hilly 600km event in Wessex known as The Brimstone.
1996, Steve accumulated 287 Audax points on a fixed wheel by riding at least 28700 km (17794 miles) in brevet rides alone. A new Audax points record which stood for 11 years. During that year, he rode an especially tough 1000km (620 miles) event called, not without reason, The Crackpot. The success rate was somewhere around 50% And yes, Steve rode it on his fixed wheel. Including commuting miles, during that 12 month period Steve had cycled over 28000 miles while holding down a full time job. All on fixed wheel.
In December 1997, Steve moved to Milton Keynes. Having a mortgage meant that money was tight, so riding to and from Audax events to save train fare money became the norm.
2000, Steve accumulated the most Audax points for that season, becoming the first person to amass more than 200 points twice in their lifetime. Though he (intentionally) was not AUK Points Champion for that year because of the rules of Audax UK. Again, this was done on a fixed wheel and again, one of those rides included The Crackpot 1000.
2007, Steve had learned from experience and thought he could improve on his Audax points record. He had another go at points chasing and smashed his own record with a total of 405 points. This works out at 40500km (25110miles) all from rides with a minimum distance of 200km (124 miles) Again, he intentionally was not the Audax Points Champion and was in full time employment. Not all rides were on fixed wheel this time. He rode a 200km event and Paris-Brest-Paris 1200km on a tandem with gears.
For the last two months of that season, he rode an 800km (495miles) ride every weekend (except one, where he rode a 600km to help a group ride their first 600km ride) and a 200km ride every Tuesday night after work, arriving home with enough time for a few hours sleep before going to work on Wednesday. This series of 800 and 200km rides began 4 days after a 600km ride, which was the day after a 200km ride, which was the day after Paris-Brest-Paris.
To date, Steve has ridden 6 Paris-Brest-Paris events:-
2003-Triplet (with Nigel Winter and Drew Buck)
2007-Tandem (with Nigel Winter)
2015- as part of his year record attempt
He has ridden a total of 24 24hr TTs. 19 on fixed wheel. 20 without any support, and often a few days after another long ride, or series of long rides. Best distance to date is 449 in 2013 with support and on gears. Fixed wheel PB is 443, unsupported in 2005 and after riding 1100 miles in the week before, also on his fixed wheel.
Other rides include several 12hr TTs. Boston-Montreal-Boston 1200km (750 miles), London-Edinburgh-London 1400km/875miles (three times), Miglia Italia 1600km (1000 miles) and a whole host of other rides of over 600km - too numerous to mention. In spite of still being below the average age for a member of Audax UK, Steve currently has the highest lifetime Audax points total.
In 2015 Steve set out to surpass Tommy Godwin's annual mileage record of 75065 miles. This attempt was scuppered by being hit from behind in a road traffic accident, resulting in a broken ankle. Unwilling to give up, Steve persevered on a recumbent trike, riding one legged on an off road closed circuit until he was able to pedal with two legs and eventually return to his Raleigh. A second, concurrent attempt began in the August of that year, but it never went well and he eventually abandoned the attempt in mid January 2016, realising that his goal was slipping irretrievably out of reach. Although Steve didn't complete his second record attempt, in his first record attempt in 2015 he did still manage to set the 4th highest ever annual cycling mileage (and to-date, 23rd January 2017, only one other living person has cycled further than Steve in a 1 year period).
He also now holds the Ultra-marathon Cycling Association (UMCA) record for annual mileage in the 18-49 years old age category with a distance of 63,608.7 miles (an average daily distance of 174.27 miles per day, for a full year - including taking time off and riding one legged, due to the broken ankle)
Steve's unsuccessful attempts at the annual mileage record (or HAMR, as it's known in the UMCA) was not all in vain. It was a good chance to do a dry run at another attempt at the year record.
As part of his training during 2016 for another attempt at the year record, Steve broke the UMCA world record for most miles cycled in a month by cycling 7104 miles during the 30 day period (an average of 236.8 miles a day). This proved not only to be a good training ride for another attempt at the year record, but also a valuable research project to test what he has learned from his previous attempts at HAMR.