Monday, August 4, 2014

Race Across America

The Race Across America is an ultramarathon bicycle race, predictably across the United States. This race changes course slightly every year, but the general course starts in Southern California and end on the East coast. This race has been happening every year since 1982.
Nice use of Google Earth

   The RAAM claims to be the longest annual endurance event in the world. There are a few more considerations than a regular road race, superhuman endurance notwithstanding. For starters, there's
this amazing 54 page PDF of directions. Here's an example.

Sample PDF page

    In a race that is so long, time is still very important and these riders don't have time to pull out a 54 page map, or even a device with a digital file. Often they rely on spectators t corners or a support crew of friends and family helping them along. That's not to say there aren't days and days of long flat roads to ponder your life choices.
   This years winners were Janice Sheufelt and Christoph Strasser. Check out these numbers:

Christoph Strasser at the finish line in 2014

 Winners results? Here you go:

Janice Sheufelt
miles: 3020.00  
Time: 11 d 18 h 2 m  
Avg MPH: 10.71

Christoph Strasser (Austrian)
miles: 3020.00  
Time: 7 d 15 h 56 m  
Avg MPH: 16.42

   For Christoph, that's about 400 miles a day. For some reason he's smiling in this picture:

2014 winner Strasser

   This was his third time taking the victory in the RAAM 2011, 2013, 2014. I'm all about trying new types of races, but I think I'll leave this to Austrians. 

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