the first step in preparing for the RAAM is to identify qualifying events. There are several throughout the year. Some are RAAM style races, and others are 24 hour events. I have identified 3 events that may suit my needs
The first event , The Texas Hill Country 600K is a new event and was held in March this year. If it is held next year, and also offered in March, it would be a perfect event for me to Qualify on. I am currently living in the Texas Hill Country. I already ride many of the roads and would have opportunities to train on the roads prior to the event. It also has the advantage of being in March allowing me to miss the blistering summer heat.
Race Across Oregon. The Race Across Oregon hits its competitors with over 40,000 feet of climbing in their 527 mile campaign to reach the finish line at Mount Hood and Cooper Spur Resort approximately 30 hours later.That is averaging a little more than 17.5 mph. It would be a tough one especially for this sprinter that is not at home on the hills at all, but I grew up on the west coast and feel home there.
The Texas Time Trial is my 3rd choice. It is held up in the northern part of the state on a closed circuit. It appears to be a little flatter than the other two events, but it is in September with big potential of being hot.
Another ride that I would like to do is the Vätternrundan. It is not a qualifier for the RAAM, but it is the biggest annual bicycling event in Sweden. It is a great ride around Vättern, one of the biggest lakes in Sweden. I almost was able to ride it a few years ago when I lived in Sweden. I still plan to ride it with some of my friends from Sweden. Maybe I will see you in Motala!