Another Year of RAAM
Last updated 8/1/2022 at 10:29am
Race Across America, the toughest bicycle race, and one of the most respected and longest running endurance sports events in the world, has wrapped up its 40th year!
Finishing not long after its 928-mile counterpart, Race Across the West (RAW), riders endured scorching heat, a leg cramp here and there, and those major climbs.
Allan Jefferson (Australia) finished first in his category (Solo 50 – 59) and Overall Solo Male in 10 days, 0 hours, 15 minutes (12.64 mph average).
While Jefferson had some RAAM experience, he'd crewed for Team Australia in 2015 and was a rider on Team Australia Rider in 2017. The New Zealand born athlete has competed in multi endurance sporting events for over 30 years.
He came to RAAM 2019 trained and prepared, but his race ended at Time Station #14, Cortez, Colorado, 884 miles from Oceanside.
Jefferson started RAAM 2022 as one of the most experienced and studied riders in this year's mostly rookie field, which early on carried him ahead of all of the male solos, and behind only Nicole Reist (Switzerland), the only racer in this year's race with a previous finish of under 10 days.
While Jefferson and the eventual winner of the Solo Male (Under 50), Svata Bozak (Czech Republic) stayed close together and traded the male solo lead a time or three, until Jefferson finally pulled away and closed on Reist through a combination of his steady pace, and her late-race fade, "I didn't want to know about anybody else."
Bozak finished with a time of 10 days, three hours and six minutes.
Reist finished third overall solo, woman's overall win, and first in her category, Solo Female (Under 50) with a time of 10 days, four hours and 13 minutes, average 12.44 mph.
Despite exhaustion and pain from a crash during her trek, Reist crossed that finish line, with Jefferson there to also congratulate her. Her doctor was there to help interpret for Reist, who said, "This was the hardest race ever for her and the crew." When she was asked how she was able to pull through, she said, "Her team of eleven, it was for her mental important to go on for the team. The goals were clear. After the crash we checked her through and she was still able to move – she was in big pain but nothing like a broken hip or something that would stop her. She was able to ride in pain. It was the hardest race ever in her life. You should finish the hardest race."
For the Solo Female (50 – 59) category, Dorina Vaccaroni (US), finished in 12 days, eight hours and four minutes.
Two-person Male (Under 50): DNF
Two-person Male (60 – 69): Team Intelligent Cycling
Two-person Mixed (Under 50): DVAG Goes RAAM
Two-person Mixed (50 – 59): Dos Amigos
Four-person Female (50 – 59): Love, Sweat & Gears
Four-person Male (Under 50): Brasil Airrelax Team
Four-person Male (50 – 59): Team Sonoma Creamery
Four-person Male (60 – 69): Vencendo Desafios Team Brasil
Four-person Mixed (Under 50): 4Cyclists4Kids
Four-person Mixed (50 – 59): 4Children
Four-person Mixed (60 – 69): Team Steinberg Coaching
Four-person Mixed (70 – 74): Seniors Tom, Jim, Beau & Babe