RAAM Returns June 14 – June 18
Last updated 6/21/2022 at 10:28am
Mark your calendars...
Race Across America and Race Across the West are back in action for 2022. This rigorous competition will have over 200 ultracyclists from 20 nations participating, including Borrego Springs' very own, Sylvia Maas.
The competition begins with over 100 cyclists (solo racers and teams), plus their crews, and will be in (TS-01) Borrego Springs after completing the first 88 miles of the 3,000-mile race, which starts in Oceanside around noon on June 14.
Trekking across our broad desert landscape where temperatures reach into the triple digits around this time, is going to be a challenge for these riders.
Borrego Springs became the first official time stop for Race Across America in 2018.
Maas, who won her two-person division in Race Across the West (RAW) in 2021, is dedicating her race this year to raise money for Borrego Springs High School students.
Three major climbs (up the Pala Grade near Oceanside plus two in the Rocky Mountains) and one minor (across the Appalachians) encompass fully one-third of the RAAM course. Also, about three-quarters of the 928-mile RAM course involves climbs, ending in Durango, Colorado. The races can and are won or lost on those climbs.
After making this first stop in Borrego Springs, they will head to Brawley (TS-02) and head out across the country. It is estimated the solo riders will pass through Borrego in the late-afternoon and mid-night. RAAM teams will begin the trek on June 18.
Despite the increase in COVID cases once again, the race is still scheduled to go on. RAAM and RAW were canceled in 2020 amid the uncertainty over public health and safety due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The annual race, dubbed to one of the most challenge endurance events and the world's longest time trial, did not take place for the first time since its inception in 1982. The race returned in 2021, and was a joy for all.
The race begins in Oceanside, California and spans 3,000 miles, climbing 175,000 feet, crossing 12 states and finishes at City Dock in Annapolis, Maryland. The route crosses 12 states, passing through 350 cities and towns.
Team racers have a maximum of nine days, but most finish in about seven and a half with the fastest in just over five days. Solo racers have a maximum of 12 days to complete the race, most finishing in 11 days with the fastest finishing in under eight days.
RAAM is a continual stage unlike many other races, and is about 30% longer than the Tour de France. The racers must complete the distance in roughly half the time, with no rest days.
RAAM is not limited to professional cyclists, and is open to professional and amateur athletes alike. While solo racers must qualify to compete, anyone may organize a team and race.
Remember to drive cautiously and cheer these riders on!
To follow the RAAM racers, visit http://www.raceacrossamerica.com.
The 6-12-24 Hour World Time Trial Championships are set for November, but are subject to change.
For more information on the 6-12-24 Hour WTTC, visit http://www.24hrworlds.com.
Social media will be buzzing at Facebook, Twitter (@RAAMraces) and Instagram (@raceacrossamerica) pages.