WE DID IT! Team Xtreme4 dominated the Race Across America! We finished first in the 4-person mixed team division with a time of 6 days, 4 hours and 18 minutes, setting a new speed record of 20.33 mph. We smashed the old record, which was 19.5 mph! The next mixed 4-person team finished nearly a full day behind us! And, if all that wasn't enough, we placed 3rd overall for 4-person teams, beating 7 out of 9 all-male teams!!!
What happened in the last 24 hours? Mostly a total dogfight with the all male, 4-person Irish Avon Navanmore team. They're not even in our division, but we were out to beat as many 4-person teams as we could, no matter how many women or men they had. It's hard to remember all the details, but for the last 24 hours, we were basically between 10 minutes ahead and 30 minutes behind, switching back and forth from West Viriginia all the way to the finish. We knew the terrain since we had practiced these last 24 hours twice before, and so all aboard knew the gruelling, super-steep hills to expect. Several RAAM media followed both teams for the last 200 miles as we chased each other all over WV, PA and MD, ending with an ALL OUT 11 mile sprint to the finish. At the last time station we discovered that we were exactly tied! It was amazing!! Who would have thought that 3,008 miles would be raced so closely with so many teams and that it would finally end in a legitimate full sprint to the finish line with all Xtreme4 crew on edge trying to make sure the riders had every fair advantage, motivating us through the radios and filling us with Red Bull and Coke to prevent the inevitable bonk!? No one could have crafted a more exciting finish.
In the end, the Irish finished 1-minute ahead. But with 6-days of excitement and adventure, a comanding #1 finish in our division, a new division record, no accidents, no time penalties, no rain (!) and one of the most idyllic, nail-biting, adrenaline-filled finishes ever possible, it hardly mattered. There was already enough to celebrate and we all felt fortunate to share our success with the Irish team when we pulled into Annapolis. They sure know how to celebrate!
It's hard to boil down 8 months of planning, preparing, training, organizing and fundraising along with 6 fast days of racing into a brief email.
Many of you followed our progress via our website, blogs and RAAM's official website. In fact you probably know better than we did where we were relative to the competition along the way. All we were doing out there was what we know best-riding fast and hard and making sure that everything we did moved the team forward as fast as possible.
The results show that our strategy and planning worked, but what they don't show is how much we depended on people like you to get there. Yes, not only did we want to send this email to brag about our results a bit, but we also wanted to take a moment to thank you for everything each of you did for us. Some of you donated money, others donated equipment, still others donated time. Everyone on this email list (and it's really big!) helped us along the way. We could feel your support throughout the process and the race itself, and many of the messages you sent to cheer us along the way were shared with the entire team, sometimes over the vehicle radios, as they came in. It's hard to describe how much energy it sent to the entire team to know that you were following our every move. It was incredible motivation and comforting to know you were there with us. So, to you, a heartfelt and sincere thank you from all the members of Team Xtreme4, riders and crew.
What's next? Well, tonight we are attending the official RAAM banquet for finishers. We'll be given a plaque for winning-which we'd like to dedicate to all our supporters, friends, and families- we couldn't have done it without you. We also would like to dedicate it to carbon-neutral transportation.
We set out to promote carbon-neutral transportation choices, and through our press coverage, those of you who pledged to go carbon-neutral during the week that we were on the road, and our zero-carbon race footprint, we think we achieved that goal. Again, we couldn't have done it without you. We urge you to continue to think about your transportation choices and their impact on the environment. Remember: if Team Xtreme4 can cycle non-stop at 20.33 mph for 6 days and 4 hours, maybe that ride to work isn't so difficult after all...
We'll have photo galleries (we have over 6,000 to choose from) and video galleries ready soon and will send you an email when they are ready. In the meantime, here are a few in this email.
With that, thank you so much for all you did for us, and we hoped you enjoyed the journey as much as we did!
Eric, Phil, Patrick, Andrea, Mariana, Dave, Christal, Paul, Laurel, Andy, Kip, Julie, Raquel, Pam, Erik, Erica, Lee, and Thomas
Congrats! by: Anonymous - 07/22/2008 10:33 PM
Congratulations on your win! Amazing!