The start of the Race Across America (RAAM) later today means that dot-watchers, as fans who follow ultracycling events through live tracking are known, will have four races to keep tabs on simultaneously.
The solo riders in the 4,800-kilometre race from Oceanside, California to Annapolis Maryland starts at 8pm BST this evening, with the men’s solo field led by defending champion Christophe Strasser.
The Austrian, who also won in 2011, 2013 and 2014, is seeking his fifth victory in the race which would see him tied with the late Jure Robič of Slovenia as the most successful rider in RAAM history.
There’s British interest, too, with Russell Kesley and Manchester City FC medic Max Sala both entered in the solo category, while four UK squads are entered in the four-person relay category which starts later in the week.
Three other ultracycling races are currently taking place and unlike RAAM, which permits full support for riders, all are unsupported.
One is the TransAtlantic Way race in Ireland, now in its third edition, with defending champion Bjorn Lenhard the first man home this afternoon.
The German has some serious ultracycling pedigree – he’s the reigning champion of Paris-Brest-Paris, having won the last edition in 2015, and was runner up in last year’s Transcontinental Race.
Plenty of riders are yet to complete the race and can be tracked at the link above, with TrackLeaders.com also currently providing live tracking for events including the Trans Am Bike Race and the Tour Divide.
Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.