The beginning of the fourth Transcontinental Race was a perfect demonstration of the growth in endurance cycling. It was a strange feeling being there as a spectator to see off the brave participants who would be cycling 250-350km a day for up to two weeks. Completely unsupported, once they complete their lap of the Muur they’re on their own as they descend into darkness. With nothing but the road and four checkpoints ahead.
The race is the child of Mike Hall, recent winner of the Tour Divide. A single stage race, with no support or set route. Some live tracking allows for armchair racers, family, and officials to follow the race as it happens. The promise from this year was that it would be designed for ‘grimpeurs not grinders’. The Transcontinental delivered this with checkpoints in Clermont-Ferrand, Furkapass, Passo Di Giau, Durmitor, before finishing in Cannakale.
All around you could feel the excitement in the air, from registration to departure. The Transconinental Race has grown year on year. The new start time of 10pm and starting in the market square allowed for more spectators to see the riders off. We the had enough time to walk up with torches to witness the climb the famous Muur.
There were three participants we saw off in particular:
Alice Williams #109
Lionel Bobb #117
Socrates Solomides #34
We wish them and all the participants of the Transcontinental Race well, we hope the road ahead is smooth and the wind behind your backs. For more information on the race please go to the Transcontinental website.