Four-man Team Action Sports set a new record in the 23rd Annual Race Across America. Team members Kerry Ryan, 45, of Calif., Nat Faulkner, 25, Canada, Kerry Classen, 31, Ore. and Sean Nealy, 29, Maine, crossed the finish line in Atlantic City, N.J., Sunday morning at 1:17 a.m. EST.
According to a report by RAAM media contact Wendy Booher, the record for the four-man category set in 1995 was 2,905 miles in five days, six hours and four minutes. Action Sports completed 2,959 miles in five days, eight hours, 17 minutes.
Solo riders and teams traveled through Brazil Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Some passed through late at night. But even those who went by on U.S. 40 during the daylight hours were mostly unnoticed by the busy workers and shoppers.
Four more solo riders dropped out of the race on Friday. Robert Rich, from Ohio, was in jeopardy of being disqualified for not making the time cutoff in Dalhar, Texas, and exacerbated some knee problems by picking up the pace. Pain in the joint forced him to quit.
One of 14 rookies in RAAM this year, Italian rider Alessandro Colo was hospitalized in Kansas with internal bleeding and saddle sores.
Andrew Lapkass, Colo., had been plagued by stomach problems from early in the race which affected his nutrition and his performance. His crew scrapped his mostly liquid diet and went to the burgers and fries he said he craved. Revitalized, Lapkass surged ahead for a while but had to withdraw from the race with back spasms.
James Roser, Va., exited the race in Guymon, Okla. Knee problems and exhaustion were cited as the reasons.
On Monday, Germany's Peter Holy withdrew from the race with saddle sores. Holy is the rider who has a partial amputation of both feet.
Another Italian had to drop out Monday. Dino Nico Valsesia left due to fatigue and exhaustion.
Slovenian Jure Robic was the solo winner crossing the finish line at 8:05 p.m. June 28 with a time of 8 days, 9 hours and 51 minutes, at an average speed of 14.66 mph. Rookie solo cyclist Michael Trevino of the USA came in second.
Austrian Wolfgang Fasching was still out at the time of this report but was expected to finish about 11:20 a.m. EST today to take third place. Fasching did not achieve his goal of being the first four-time RAAM winner. But all seven times he has entered the race, Fasching finished third or better.
Robic trained, not just to finish, but to win the race. This was his second RAAM. Last year the four-time Slovenian National Road Champion was in good shape physically, but not mentally. According to his crew members, this year he was prepared in both. Also, the fact that Robic will become a father in July added to his focus and incentive.
After he crossed the finish line, Robic said, "When I came in and saw all the people applauding me, it made me so happy that I made it. I've trained all my life for cycling and this is one of my greatest triumphs."
When asked what was next, Robic said, "My goal now is to get my baby healthy."