It is interesting to read the RAAM site to hear the many, many other incredible jouneys that are unfolding. People crashing, going to the hospital and getting back on the bike, the 2 lead solo racers coming in to TS42 at the SAME time, hearing of a team rider being chased by a dog and crashing at 30mph, nose bleeds through the desert, the accounts go on and on and substantiate the RAAM claim of the toughest cycling event on Earth. Here’s a post that mentions Michael –
CLICK HERE to go to the Official RAAM Solo Blog.
June 24, 2009
By Vic Armijo
Late last night (or was it early this morning? It all runs together.) we were leapfrogging Team ViaSat (pass and shoot photos, stop ahead, shoot photos, on and on) and came across a rider who was pedaling quite a bit slower than the riders we’d been. “Holy Cow a solo!” my driver said. Sure enough, it was American RAAM rookie Michael Cook. Cook is currently in 12th—I hesitate to call it “last place” since there are so many riders in the premier category who were considered contenders, but have pulled out. To still be in the race well past the halfway point, and to still be healthy and moving forward well is no small feat.
I wasn’t able to speak with Cook or his crew, but here’s an account that one of his crew posted to his website:
“Clearly his body is wondering what the heck he is thinking and doing but he is giving it massages and resting it as much as he can when he is not on his bike. In looking at the average mph stats for the racers still in the race, Michael’s average is less than 1/2 mile per hour than the 6 riders ahead of him and 3/4 mile per hour than the 7th. Tomorrow will mark one week on the bike. This has been a tough day – the heat has been brutal and downright oppressive. From the interaction I had, I would have to say this was the toughest day of the race so far. The comments being left on the site really make a difference.”