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An Invitation to RAAM
By P. Stone
Date: 12/9/2003
An Invitation to RAAM
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"RAAM is not something I do for fun. It's a challenge and I take it very seriously". - Allen Larsen RAAM 2003 Solo Male Champion

RAAM is an epic challenge that once experienced, influences a rider for the rest of his or her life. Its magnitude touches all those that it contacts. Somewhere inside the intensity and the passion, somewhere between San Diego and the boardwalk in Atlantic City, the rider engages another path. A path that spurs the grit of a competitor and the strength of one's character. On that first heat-drenched climb out of the city, the enormity of RAAM hits home. It is a reality check more sobering than sirens and flashing lights. In RAAM there are no pretenders. 

Recollections of thousands of miles of preparation, of pain, sacrifice and commitment and of past accomplishments are fueled with adrenalin and ambition to cultivate a raw courage. That distinct courage that implores, "Yes, I can." It pumps in their hearts, surges in their legs and pulsates in their temples. Hunger grows, desire soars. It's a time to ride, to race towards a distant destiny inconceivable to imagine. Not measured in miles or hours or days, but in lifetimes. Even though the finish line seems to border on infinity during the race, only post race reflection reveals the true length of the odyssey. Time, effort and motion help the rider to slip into a groove. He starts to fuse with his bike, the landscape and the respect demanded by the task at pedal. With the passing of the first night comes comfort and the power of self-belief. By morning the road has led to the dawn of the rider's life and a brave new world unfolds. It's a long road and those that race upon it begin to appreciate that it never ends. When the desert sun climbs high and rains down a punishing heat, it's like putting out a fire with gasoline.


The reasons to compete in RAAM have existed since the dawn of mankind. RAAM's allure and driving force is bore from the same primal vein that compelled Christopher Columbus, Sir Edmund Hillary, and every great explorer, champion and hero the world has ever known. And millions more, the unsung everyday people who have answered the call of the wild, those that stood up to insurmountable odds, no matter the outcome. Men and women that harness the courage to go forward when all logic and reason says stop, these are the riders of RAAM.

RAAM '04
Are you ride enough?


RAAM, the Insight Race Across America, 2920 miles, no scheduled rests, no drafting - no pretenders.  



On June 20, 2004, the 23rd Annual Insight Race Across America begins in San Diego, California. Competitors climb over 83,000 feet while crossing 14 states in their 2,920 mile campaign to the finish line in Atlantic City, New Jersey, approximately 9 days later.  Divisions included in the race are Male/Female Soloist; Tandem; 2 or 4 Person Team; and Corporate Team (8 Person).  For further information please visit or contact us at


RAAM Qualification Requirements


Solo Riders

Solo riders need to qualify during one of the events on the UMCA schedule and meet minimum performance standards.  After a rider completes RAAM officially, as a solo rider or Team, they do not have to re-qualify in either division. A list of RAAM Qualifying Events are available here.  All past official RAAM finishers are eligible for life. All past solo RAAM qualified riders are eligible for the next three years before they lose their status, then they must re-qualify at a qualifying event.  For those that feel they are worthy but have been unable to qualify due to logistics may apply to the race director for consideration.


Teams 2 or 4 Person and Corporate Team riders are not required to qualify.

Entry Fees

Early Booking Discount ends December 31st, 2003 Deposits accepted. To register online please click here.


Current Records

Solo men: Pete Penseyres, (1986) 8:09:47 - 3107 miles -15.40 mph/ 5000 km – 24.78 kph Solo women: Seana Hogan, (1995) 9:04:02 - 2912 miles - 13.20 mph / 4686 km – 21.24 kph 2-person Team: Discover Ceara/Powerbar (2001) 7d 1h 5m -- 2983.2 miles = 17.64 mph / 4801 km – 28.39 kph 4-person Team: Kern Wheelmen (1996) 5:06:04 - 2905 miles = 23.04 mph / 4675 km – 37.08 kph


"Your deepest dreams  - your worst and best character, everything shows up in this week." - Reinhard Hörmann, Team RAAM 2003: Team HARREITHER HEIZSYSTEME / VAV VERSICHERUNG



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