Mike Hall won the 4,406 miles of the 2014 Trans Am Bike Race at 0300 this morning, with an average moving speed of 13.1 mph over the past 18 days. A bit of calculator-poking suggests that the Yorkshireman spent less than five-and-a-half hours per day off the bike in that period. Which is fairly impressive, I’m sure you’ll agree.
Jason ‘the Hammer’ Lane (Canada; ‘the Hammer’ bit is because he’s been run over multiple times…) looks set to take second and Edward Pickup (another Brit) third. With 650 miles still to run there’s a close battle for fourth between leading lady Juliana Buhring (Italy, and world record holder for fastest woman to cycle around the world) and Jesse Stauffer (USA). Tracking for everyone involved can be found here.
The Trans Am is different from RAAM in that it is completely unsupported. The rider can buy things along the way (including accommodation), but “any services utilised must always be commercially available to all challengers and not pre-arranged”. Anything else you want with you, you carry on the bike. There’s only one exception; you can post a parcel to a Post Office in advance, and hope you arrive during opening hours.
There’s also specific rule to stop you summoning ‘trail magic’, so cunning tweets along the lines of “Gee, what I wouldn’t give for a fresh pair of shorts at the next stop” are outlawed as well.
Having had a quick shifty at the route, it turns out my impression of the USA (hilly on the left, pancake-flat everywhere else) isn’t entirely accurate.
Hat’s off to Mike, and everyone else who is yet to finish!