Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Race Across America Recap

Race Across America Recap
The most challenging part of all was getting to the starting line

It is hard to believe that after months of training, fundraising and preparing for a epic race of a lifetime that it is now come to an end.

The logistics of such an event is unbelievable. Four racers, 15 crew members, and 4 vehicles racing from Oceanside, California to Annapolis, Maryland is no easy feat. At times it seemed as if Murphy's law would take place-everything that can go wrong will go wrong.

Team Hope overcame all obstacles to accomplish our goal. My inspiration was knowing that we can truly make a positive impact and bring awareness to such a great cause as St. Charles School in Uganda with Blue Planet Network and Drink Local Drink Tap. This kept me pedaling day and night.

The simple things are what mean the most to me. I did get to eat my burger and fries too!

I tried to take IN-N-OUT burger sauce home with me to Cleveland. I just found out it needs to be refrigerated.
Through Utah I was having trouble with my front derailleur while climbing. I flashed back to my younger days where I would ride up and down the street making noise with my clothes pin baseball card hitting the spokes.

Somewhere in the middle of the United States I convinced our chief Kat and navigator David to blast the XM Sirius Disney radio station. We rocked out to Miley Cyrus, Britney Spears, and Justin Beiber for hours.

My parents helped organize letters that friends and family had sent me. After shifts I would receive a letter or two. These always kept me smiling and laughing along the way.

 While in Durango, Colorado my friend Patricia George from Pittsburgh was out there with her parents! Team H2Ope had a fan club following us :)

It was so nice to see you PG!

I can now add possums to the list of animals that are trying to hit me. I had one come out on the edge of the road while in Ohio sometime in the middle of the night.

On one of our last shifts together, my teammate David said, "If your not leaving on the edge, you are taking up too much space." He's right. Life is too short not to explore and push your limits.

At time station 52 while waiting, this gentlemen with his daughters walked up to me. He said my daughters were so excited to see a girl riding. I talked with Brooke, 4, and Grace, 6, about riding bicycles with training wheels, their friend who was also named Sara, and asked them if they want to Race Across America. Right now they want to make it around the block. I told them do not let obstacles hold you back.  

None of this would be possible without our wonderful crew! Kat, Ociel, Katie, Emily, Trish, Diana, Josh, Bill, Alonso, David, Nick, Shell, and Ruben. Racing my bike was the easy part. If if was not for the crew members, this would not have been possible. It was also a pleasure to race with Alex and Andre. You all are simply the best!

Experiences are what make us who we are. I will never forget this adventure or the friends I made along the way. I will cherish it forever and I am more than ready for the next challenge down the road.

I got Trish, Diana, Josh to sign up as crew members which was the hardest job of all. Trish and Diana are like big sisters who always have my back. I do not know if I would have finished if it was not for you two ladies. Thank you for everything.