Riding from Bolga to Accra – meet James Kumbeni

James with his colleagues at Keekee Cycling Connect pose for the cameras during one of their expeditions

Riding can be a daunting task for many. It is something everyone thinks everyone knows how to do but it is also something most people know most people don’t know how to do. That is a real mix. But even for those who know how to ride, there are differences between riding for the need of it such as those who use it for need of transport and the rest. James Kumbeni is in the category that rides for a different reason other than as a means of transportation.

Today, we talk about one rider who started riding just to keep fit and satisfy his passion. After many years doing it, he has begun to push himself to new limits and is about to embark on a rather daring one; the biggest in his riding career so far.

But who is James Kumbeni?

A graduate of the University for Development Studies, James started riding in 2021. The Bolgatanga-based cyclist says started riding as a form of “exercise” and also as a “hobby”. But after three years of riding which has so far included multiple cross-district and cross-region expeditions, he is about to ride to the national capital, Accra.

April 2024 will be exactly three years since James Kumbeni officially started his riding journey for fitness and fun. His riding expeditions have taken him to places such as Bongo, Kongo, Sirigu, Nasia, Walewale and the Ghana border with Burkina Faso in Paga. Most of these places have received James and his riding cliche, Keekee Cycling Konnect, formerly Pedals on Fire several times in the last three years.

James and his colleague riders at the Ghana border with Burkina Faso in Paga
James and his colleague riders at the Ghana border with Burkina Faso in Paga. Photo: Facebook/Keekee Cycling Konnect

Buoyed by the motto for Keekee Cycling Konnect where he is Chief Pedaller, which is “Konnecting the world through bicycles“, James has sought to use his platform as a Cyclist to offer support where possible. One of his most noticeable efforts was a 170km ride from Bolgatanga to Tamale to support Executive Chef Failatu who was embarking on a Guinness World Records cooking attempt.

His latest mission, the biggest to date in his 3-year riding career is the one that will lead him to Accra from Bolgatanga this April. James and his colleagues are riding the 815km (506 miles) journey from Bolga to Accra to support a young man who is about to embark on another Guinness World Record attempt. The distance is approximately 25% of the expected distance for the 2024 Tour de France (3,328km).

In a chat with our reporter, James spoke about his inspirations, detailing the reasons why he is going on this daring attempt. He told our reporter that his desire has always been to support young people whenever he can. That perfectly aligns with his profession as a teacher where he serves as an inspiration and model for young learners.

James Kumbeni rode 170k from Bolga to Tamale to support Chef Failatu Cook-a-thon in January 2024
James Kumbeni rode 170k from Bolga to Tamale to support Chef Failatu’s Cook-a-thon in January 2024. Photo: Facebook/Keekee Cycling Konnect

“I am someone who likes to support people in any form,” James explained, adding, “I like to see my colleague youth excel so anytime I have an opportunity to support, I do it to the maximum”.

According to him, he is “therefore motivated to embark on this 815km cycling journey from Bolga to Accra to support a colleague youth who is seeking to break a world record. He is called Joel Atinga. He is to embark on Kheba-a-thon. I have done a similar thing before and I am ready to do it again. Just this January, I cycled to Tamale to support Chef Failatu on a similar cause,” he stated.

Follow James and his cycling team on social media at Keekee Cycling Konnect. For further information or to partner James on this expedition, reach out via 0248453533/0206929339.

More on this expedition soon…

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