Welcome to RAAM 2019, this is a race like no other! So what does that really mean? We all know that riding a bike can be tough and riding it for several hours over chipseal pavement even tougher. But can you imagine yourself riding for 12 or 24 or 36 hours? Can you imagine yourself pedaling in the desert in 110 degrees into a headwind? These are factors that are presenting themselves in the first 6-8 hours of this race – a race that could last 12 days and the fastest finisher who is trying to best-the-record in sub 8 days.
Today, we took Pete out on a reconnaissance of the first leg effort. We did a chunk of the ride yesterday and today was an elongated effort, to get us to the first time-station at Borrego Springs. For the effort, Peter rode for 3hrs 26 mins, 83.2km at an average HR of 137. He ascended 1,222 meters of climbing with an average temperature during his ride of 95 degrees. This is truly a tough effort and we are merely 144kms into this race of more than 4,945kms.
Peter was looking great throughout the effort and while the heat and wind created some challenges it all seemed quite manageable – very manageable when you are sitting in the car leap-frogging him! The good news, is that the racer has a crew, who can cater to his every whim to ensure that all his focus is on the task of turning the pedals.
Today, we were handing Peter Gatorade G2 every 30 minutes so he was taking on at least 1 bottle/hour. He got sprayed with ice cold water every 15-30 minutes, he was handed ice-cold gels, he got his glasses cleaned and his garmin washed down. So we are trying to keep on top of everything the racer needs and in fact try to anticipate his needs so we can “get out in front” of those needs. Truly, this is a team effort to get us to the finish line. With that said, it takes extraordinary physical talent and mental strength in the racer to achieve the goal of finishing RAAM. We are looking forward to getting this race started on Tuesday at 1:36pm PT or 4:36pm EST, when Pete will be the 4th to last departing from Oceanside California. Stay tuned, check back daily and send Peter notes through the “Good Vibes” reply.