Race Across America (RAAM)
An Ultra-endurance event, a 5000 Km cycle race from East to West across the United States, starting from the Pacific coast and ending at the Atlantic, climbing 52000Mts. It is one long race, like a continuous race stage or time trial. Male Solo riders who ride the entire distance have up to 12 days to finish. Women solos and 50+ riders have 12 days and 21 hours. Relay Teams of 2, 4 or 8 persons get up to 9 days to finish. Most solos will not sleep more than 3 hours a day for the entire duration.
All riders have to be accompanied and supported by a crew at all times, driving support vehicles, providing the riders with all that they need. Crew duties include driving, navigating, bike maintenance and mechanics, Physiotherapy, massage, managing nutrition, hydration and sleep, managing the emotional and Psychological well being of the riders, logistics, communications etc
Compare RAAM to the Tour de France or Mt Everest
The Race Across America is almost 50% longer than the Tour de France. Solo racers will finish in about 10 days, which is half the time of the Tour de France, and will have no rest days. RAAM racers are not allowed to draft or ride in packs. Every solo racer will make their way across the country on their own power with no help with teammates.
Mt. Everest and the Race Across America are entirely different. Austrian adventurer Wolfgang Fasching has won solo RAAM three times and climbed Mt. Everest. In his opinion, – “Everest is more dangerous, but RAAM is much harder.”
Divya Tate – My personal interest in RAAM, with respect to my work with building Ultra Cycling in India –
“I accompanied a solo rider from India in 2012 on his 3rd attempt at RAAM, which also sadly failed, largely due to inadequate management and logistic support. In 2013 went as RAAM support crew to get on-road RAAM experience. My motivation was to be able to understand the management and logistical requirements of participating in RAAM so as to be prepared for other riders’ participation from India. India entered the Ultra cycling world in 2010 with the first Randonneuring event, and in 4 short years we have got a large number of Long Distance Endurance Cyclists who are well on their way to getting ready for an event as demanding as RAAM. In 2014 I started a RAAM qualifier race in India, from Pune to Goa, The Deccan Cliffhanger, a 640 km Ultra race. And in 2014 I went to RAAM to continue to learn and help in the evolution of Ultra cycling in India. I was a support crew in a shorter race within RAAM and then officiated for the race. I hope to inspire and more men and women to get into this most challenging of sports.”