Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The 1st Annual Race Across Wisconsin


Above is a picture of the very first 220 mile/one day "Race Across Wisconsin", back in 1984. One dark, early morning in August, three crazy men took off from the shores of the Mississippi River in La Crosse (Wisconsin). The day was tough, and the terrain was nothing short of challenging. Rich, the cyclist in the middle of the pic, eventually dropped out some where around the 150 mile mark. Brian (on the right) and I finished the race. This was taken on the east shore of the Wisconsin River at an unscheduled rest stop. Rich and Brian had caught back up with me after making a much too early attempt to break away, so we figured it was also a great excuse for a photo op.

I organized and directed the RAW (Race Across Wisconsin) for 4 years, from 1984-1987. 1987 gave us our largest field of 66 racers, everyone with their own personal support crew, with some riders traveling from as far away as California. Ages ranged from a 17 year-old high school senior from Keil, WI, to 60 year-old retired United States Marine.

Over the next week I'll be putting in some long miles along with speedwork. Then I'll begin my taper for a "double-century" on June 24th, my first in over 20 years. The crew and I will go over the first 200 miles of the route for the August record attempt.

Please pray for safety and encouragement for our journey.


  1. Mark,
    Good to see you haven't changed! I was on the '87 RAW Ride but under estimated the amount of training involved. I lasted about 120 miles before a knee gave out. I was 35 then and now, at 60, I am getting ready for the RAGBRAI. Just another item on the bucket list! Take care and keep on bikin'.
    Rick S.

  2. Hi Rick!
    Nice to hear from you. How did you find my blog?
    Honestly, I had been out of cycling for 20 years, and just got back into it about 4 years ago. Have fun on RAGBRAI.

  3. In the photo my bike is on the left. On the handlebars is the very first bicycle computer ever made, the Pacer 2000 by Veltec. It belonged to Tom Pawlik, a friend of mine, who was kind enough to let me use it that year for training.