John’s Race Report:
Ann and I raced the Mid-Atlantic 24 Hour, (a Race Across America qualifying event) in Washington, North Carolina. Even though Ann and I are already qualified for RAAM, it was a confidence boost to exceed the qualifying threshold of 400 miles at this well run event. For the first 12 hours Ann and I smoked the flat, hot and muggy course… averaging a little over 21 mph to reach 253 miles. After that, we felt the need to back off a bit and recover from hammering in the heat for most of the day. At about the same time, crew members Bill Cook and Joe Pixley threw us a very welcomed pizza party. The course was a 26 mile loop and at the end of each loop Bill and Joe would have a variety of food and beverages available for us when we returned. We enjoyed their company and refreshments so much that we began to spend a little too much time at these wonderful stops. Our time off the bike at night and, our lack of nighttime riding this summer, kept us from reaching our goal of exceeding the current Ultra Marathon Cycling Associations mixed tandem record of 454 miles. However, in our first 24 hour event on a tandem, we got pretty close with 446 miles! It was also great to see a few ultracycling friends and competitors from the past, John and Nancy Guth, Wes Wilmer and Tom Buckley to name a few. This was also our first event using Strava, which I apparently failed miserably at. After almost 17 hours of riding I did not realize that Strava stopped recording our event. I eventually figured it out and only missed recording about 31 miles.