A CYCLIST from Okehampton was on top of the world in July, having completed the world’s most gruelling cycling race along the whole Tour de France route, one week ahead of the professionals.

In a bid to raise £1 million for vital leukaemia research, Rhett Groom, 54, was part of a team of 18 amateur cyclists who rook on all 21 stages of the 2022 Tour de France, covering 2,429km and climbing 49,700 metres as they scaled the majestic heights of the Pyrenees, the Alps and the Vosges.

Having started in Copenhagen in Denmark, and undertaking the majority of the route through Belgium, Switzerland and France, Rhett and the other riders bumped over punishing cobblestones, endured biblical rain in Vosges, France, and experienced searing heat.