Today we start a series about our favorite RAAM team – Team Beau and Babe. Team Beau and Babe are my (James’) aunt and uncle. Join us as we follow their race across the US! We will be providing updates as they make their way across the country for 3000 miles…riding to raise awareness and promote Safe Blood, an initiative to make the world’s blood supply safer.
RAAM – Oceanside, California to Annapolis Maryland: 3,000-miles, 12 U.S. states, 170,000 feet of climbing.
It is an absolute pleasure to start a multi-part series on RAAM – what Outside Magazine has called “the toughest test of endurance in the world.”
I take great pride in this series because my Aunt and Uncle are attempting set a new RAAM record for “senior couple.” I admire their athletic prowess and commitment more than I could ever tell them. Also, in speaking with them about the race, RAAM is sneaking its way onto my “bucket list.” As such, I am excited to live vicariously through them for the next 10-days.
The race starts on Wednesday, June 13.
Today’s post is about RAAM itself, and about Team RAAM Beau and Babe.
In the coming days I will provide a number of blog updates about their progress. I ask that our loyal Fitness Electronics Reviews Followers join us in cheering them on during this colossal feat!!
ABOUT “TEAM RAAM BEAU & BABE”
A quick training ride for team Beau & Babe
My Uncle John tuning 4 beautiful Litespeed bikes and 12 tubular wheelsets
Team RAAM Beau and Babe is the record setting husband and wife cycling team John and Nancy Guth, racing across America in June 2012.
John, 58, and Nancy, 61, are world class cyclists tackling their toughest cycling challenge ever—the daunting 3,000 mile Race Across America.
On Wednesday, June 13th in Oceanside, California, a member of Team RAAM Beau and Babe will roll away from the Pacific coast. John and Nancy will alternate legs of the race as the team pedals 24-7 toward its goal, the finish line in Annapolis, Maryland. By completing RAAM within the time limit, Team RAAM Beau and Babe will set a new RAAM record for a senior couple racing across the USA.
John and Nancy have ridden in long-distance cycling events together for the past 17 years, setting 24 hour distance records as a couple in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2009.
John is an engineer and a mining inspector for the Commonwealth of Virginia. He’s finished four 1,200 km. (744-mile) events, including the famed Paris-Brest-Paris race. This is his first RAAM.
Nancy is a professor, author and literacy supervisor for the Stafford County, Va. Public Schools. Nancy is an accomplished ultramarathon cyclist who was first place female finisher at the 24-Hour National Championships in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009. In 2010, Nancy was part of a successful four-person RAAM team that included a paralyzed hand cyclist. In 2011, Nancy and teammate Mary Florian set a RAAM record for an all-female age-60+ team.
Nancy is one of only two women in the two-person team division in the 2012 RAAM. The other female is 34-year-old Canadian university professor Cara Gillis.
With an average age of 60.5, Team RAAM Beau and Babe is the “oldest” two-person team in the 2012 RAAM.
John and Nancy have four children and five grandchildren.
John and Nancy say life is much like a bike race. Planning and hard work pay off! They’re riding to inspire all who want to plan and work toward a healthier, more enjoyable quality of life.
RAAM is a colossal organizational challenge. Crew chief and daughter Marta Sullivan will coordinate several vehicles and about a dozen crew members in a 24-7 event that’s always moving, night or day, rain or shine.
Crew Chief / my cousin, Marta is far right! Uncle John is far left
RAAM takes place on open roads. Nancy and John will be accompanied by a follow vehicle to shield them from traffic, keep them on course, and respond to needs as they arise.
Fitness Electronics Reviews has bike envy…
AND…fitness electronics envy. Check out their log van – An inverter, GPS units, laptops, CB radios, even a microphone for (as the team says) late night karaoke!
ABOUT THE RACE ACROSS AMERICA (RAAM)
Outside magazine calls the Race Across America “the toughest test of endurance in the world.”
This round-the-clock transcontinental cycling race follows a 3,000-mile course through 12 U.S. states. Organizers report the 2012 RAAM route has 170,000 feet of climbing. That’s the equivalent of 32 miles straight up, or nearly six times the height of Mount Everest!
Unlike the Tour de France and other professional stage races, in the Race Across America, there are no ‘rest days.’ The clock never stops. Riders complete the course solely under their own power, with no drafting allowed.
The race truly is a monumental undertaking: 3 vans. 1 log van, 2 support vans.
Nancy and John will each crank out about a half million pedal strokes on their coast-to-coast trek!
RAAM rolls on rain or shine. Dust storms, frigid rains, lightning and even tornadoes aren’t out of the question as the team tackles the varied climates of 12 U.S. states. Temperatures on the route can range from below freezing in the Rockies to up to 120 degrees in the Sonoran desert.
Only about 15 percent of RAAM racers are women.
Team racers have a maximum of nine days to finish the 3,000 mile RAAM course. To finish RAAM within the time limit, Nancy and John will each ride their bikes at least 168 miles a day, nine days in a row!
How tough is RAAM? Wolfgang Fasching has climbed Mt. Everest and won RAAM three times. “Everest is more dangerous, but the Race Across America is harder,” he says.
ABOUT THE CAUSE THEY’RE RACING FOR:
Team RAAM Beau and Babe promotes Safe Blood, Inc., a Rotary Club initiative to make the world’s stored blood supply safer.
In many countries, the donated blood supply is tainted with diseases, including chagas, hepatitis B and C, HIV and syphilis.
The mission of Safe Blood, Inc. is to: 1) Convert the Rotary family in each country into regular blood donors; 2) Convert Rotarians into permanent promoters of voluntary blood donation; 3) Mobilize resources to improve in-country infrastructure for blood donation, testing and storage; 4) Support centralized, cost-effective blood donor centers and test laboratories in each population center; 5) Educate the Latin American and Caribbean public about the reasons for voluntary blood donation and 6) Encourage local blood drives and community involvement.
BEST OF LUCK TO TEAM RAAM BEAU & BABE from Fitness Electronics Reviews!!