Hi ...

I just returned from the start of the Team Race Across America.  Race Director
Michael Shermer asked me to lead the riders out from Irvine to the "Real
Start" at Gypsum Canyon Road and I was honored to do so!!

Team Tyler was found with the ABC Crew shooting "Good Morning, America" from
the start line in Irvine.  Look for RAAM Coverage on Good Morning America and
the NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw this week.

The weather was hotter and more humid than the Solo RAAM Start on Thursday.
Those Solo guys and gals don't know how lucky they had it!!

As we left the Holiday Inn and rolled down Redhill, I turned around to see a
HUGE PELOTON of about 200 Cyclists rolling behind us.  It was really an honor
to lead out such a large group.  We timed the lights perfectly -- in fact, I
was looking forward to some Red Lights in order to grab a picture or two --
but we had Green Lights at almost every intersection!!  

I had a chance to introduce myself to Bob Fourney who was riding his Recumbent
Lightning Bike out to the start.  He mentioned that he had his Human Powered
Vehicle up to 80 Miles Per Hour on Interstate 70 in Colorado!!!  He grinned as
he told me that he was in the fast lane!!  80 Miles Per Hour on a BIKE!!??!!
Now that's unbelievable -- except we're talking about Bob Fourney who won Solo
RAAM in 1990 and 1991, so I really do believe it.  Bob is no stranger to HPV's
-- all the way back in 1989, he teamed up with Michael Coles and the Penseyres
Brothers to set a Transcon Record of 5 Days 1 Hour with an Average Speed of
24.02MPH!!   I took a number of photos of Bob and his Vehicles and will post
them to my Web Site at www.CalTripleCrown.com soon!!

By the way, Bob also mentioned that he can average 35 MPH Century times on his
fully faired Lightning!!  Think of riding a Century in 2 Hours and 51 Minutes
-- and again, Bob wasn't pulling my leg!!  Watch out for Bob -- he's going to
really smoke the pavement.

Competition will be tough with the Teams however.  It will make for a very
interesting Race!!

We kept the Average Speed down to about 16MPH from the Holiday Inn to Yorba
Park where we stopped for about 5 minutes.  Everyone arrived together and
appeared ready to Rock and Roll.  From there, Michael Shermer and I revved it
up a notch to about 20MPH out to Gypsum Canyon Road.  It was cool to see
Michael in excellent shape (he's been riding 6 days a week) -- and he really
stoked it up on the bike path to about 22MPH and lead these guys out well.  I
was working hard with my Heart Rate at 186BPM holding behind Michael!!  In
fact, we may be able to get Michael out for the Angeles Crest Century that
Hugh Murphy is putting on in September (For more info on that, go to
www.Badwater.com).  Michael mentioned that Angeles Crest was his very First
Century -- talk about starting big!!

At the "Real Start" on Gypsum Canyon Road, I made the mistake (?) of taking 3
photos as the start gun went off.  By the time I put my Camera in my pocket,
these guys were off like Rockets.  I hit the hammer the best I could and only
was able to catch the last 3 guys.  On the other side of Interstate 91, Bob
Fourney swapped into his Fully Enclosed Lightning!!  I said to myself, "Sure
hope that baby comes with Air Conditioning!!"  I was cooking at 11:00 AM PST
-- temps were at least 90 Degrees with High Humidity.  Good luck to Bob and
all the Teams!!

Team RAAM is off to a great start!!

Chuck Bramwell

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