Suzuki V-Strom carries couple to world record

A Suzuki V-Strom sport adventure tourer motorbike has carried a couple on a world record trip.

Ollie Gamblin and Lavi Scholl set a new Guinness World Record as the youngest pair to circumnavigate the world on a motorbike, two-up.

The trusty V-Strom 1050XT took them to 39 countries on five continents, covering 46,705 miles in 589 days.

The record is 33 years and 247 days, their average age when completing the adventure.

Ollie said: “Throughout all of it, the V-Strom was absolutely solid. Its reliability was its main virtue.

“Considering the terrain it tackled, how long it went between services, it was pretty much unbreakable.

“Over nearly 47,000 miles we only had minor issues with some bearings finally giving up in hostile conditions and the rear shock took a bit of abuse and needed replacing. But I think that’s absolutely incredible given everything it went through.”

They set off from the Ace Cafe in London with Ollie, from Northampton, riding and Lavi, from Hanover, Germany, pillion.

First, it was into France, before crossing into Spain.

Leaving Europe behind, they arrived in Morocco, Africa, then travelled down the west coast through Mauritania to Senegal.

The V-Strom was loaded into a container and shipped to Brazil for the South American leg of the journey.

They rode to the very bottom of Argentina, reaching the world’s southernmost city, Ushuaia, on the island of Tierra del Fuego, before returning north and up through Chile, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador and Colombia.

With eight countries ticked off in South America, Lavi and Ollie flew their V-Strom over the Darien Gap and into Panama, and entered North America.

They married in Las Vegas, Nevada, then headed north to Canada and airfreighted the bike to Seoul in South Korea.

The married couple took a boat ride to Vladivostok in Russia, then continued west through Mongolia, Kazakhstan and Kygyzstan, eventually crossing the Caspian Sea into Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey and across the Bosphorus, back into Europe.

Nine more countries were ticked off, with Belgium the 39th and last unique nation crossed, before returning to the UK via France, 20 months after starting the trip of a lifetime.

Lavi said the idea for a Guinness World Record came after a friend tried to become the youngest male to circumnavigate the globe by motorcycle, an already established record.

So they asked about a team record and Guinness accepted it under the title youngest pair to circumnavigate the globe by motorcycle (riding pillion).

“We didn’t really think we would make it all the way around the world when we started. The aim was just to get as far as possible but we always imagined there would be something to stop us, a visa or shipping issue, something like that. Our mindset was just as long as we can continue we will, and that just so happened to be all the way until the end.”

Ollie said Mongolia surprised them with vast, beautiful landscapes, herds of animals and local people living in gers, traditional round dwellings.

Another highlight was seeing wild orca hunt for penguins on the remote Argentinian coast.

But the trip was not without its challenges and low points.

“We had to wait in Rio de Janeiro for eight weeks because the bike was lost for a while being shipped from Senegal,” recalled Ollie.

“And we certainly toppled off many times! I didn’t have a great deal of riding experience before we set off, especially on big bikes, so it was a real learning curve and a pretty steep one.

“Especially two-up with all of our luggage. We also had a few hairy weather situations in places, like the high-altitude mountains of the Andes where the passes took us up to nearly 5,000 metres.”

Find out more about the Suzuki V-Strom range at

Lavi and Ollie documented their journey on their YouTube channel –