Beyond Limits: The Inspiring Story of James Golding’s RAAM Adventure

Beyond Limits: The Inspiring Story of James Golding’s RAAM Adventure

James Golding’s journey showcases resilience, determination, and a relentless pursuit of victory. In this story, he will be embarking on a gruelling race across America, following six long years of preparation.


Meet the Crew


  • Dean Downing: Coach
  • Paul Morton: Team Crew Chief
  • Charlie Ward: Team Physiotherapist
  • Alex Cabrita: Sports Physiotherapist
  • Simon Cordner: Sponsorship & Media Manager
  • Toby Hockley: Mechanic



What is RAAM?


Race Across America is an ultra-endurance cycling event that covers nearly 3,100 miles, from the west coast to the east coast of the United States. It’s one of the most challenging endurance bike races in the world, with a series of ruthless ascents that push cyclists to their limits. Among the most notable challenges in RAAM are the breathtaking climbs in the Rockies, where riders battle against gravity at elevations reaching over 14,000 feet (4,267 meters). In essence, this race is a time trial — once the clock starts, it doesn’t stop until you reach the finish line.

Brutal facts of RAAM


  1. Extreme Distance: RAAM spans approximately 3,100 miles from the west coast to the east coast of the United States, making it one of the longest endurance races in the world.
  2. Unforgiving Time Limits: RAAM has strict time limits that participants must meet at various checkpoints along the route. Falling behind can result in disqualification.
  3. Relentless Climbs: RAAM includes numerous challenging climbs, with riders tackling significant elevation points such as the Rockies, Sierra Nevada Mountains, and the Appalachian Mountains.
  4. Average Speed: Despite the challenging terrain, elite riders in RAAM maintain an average speed of around 15-17 mph, showcasing their exceptional endurance and cycling prowess.
  5. Unpredictable Weather: Riders face the challenge of tackling various weather conditions throughout the race. From scorching heat in the deserts to sudden thunderstorms in the mountains, they must adapt to changing weather patterns.
  6. Sleep Deprivation: Participants must navigate the race with minimal sleep, often riding through the night and enduring the mental and physical strain of sleep deprivation.
  7. Limited Support: Unlike other races with extensive support systems, participants in RAAM have limited crew support, requiring them to be self-sufficient and make critical decisions on their own.
  8. Physical Toll: The intense physical demands of RAAM can lead to various physical ailments, including muscle fatigue, saddle sores, and overuse injuries caused by prolonged riding.
  9. Mental Fatigue: The long duration and intense focus required in RAAM can lead to mental fatigue, testing participants’ ability to stay motivated and focused throughout the race.
  10. High Dropout Rate: RAAM is notorious for its high dropout rate, with many participants unable to complete the grueling race due to its extreme challenges, including the combination of distance, elevation, weather conditions, and the toll it takes on the body and mind.

As James prepares for the race, his crew rallies around him. They believe in him, and he feels a fire inside him to perform at his best so as not to let them down. James has attracted a very solid team, which has turned into more of a family. He knows they would do anything for him, just as he would do anything for them.


The crew is like a family, and they share a joyous experience together as they prepare for the race. They are all cyclists at heart, and they are all here for the same reason. They want to look after James and each other, and they feel like brothers. James loves them all to bits, but he also finds them rather annoying at times.

Despite the challenges ahead, James’ mental strength is through the roof. Not completing Race Across America is not an option. He’s been breeding this dream for six years.


As the start-time approaches, James feels more confident than ever, and more committed to achieving this incredible feat for himself and everyone who has supported him along the way. But what happens next is something no one was prepared for.

Though James’s journey in the Race Across America may have been interrupted by unforeseen circumstances, his determination and unwavering spirit remain an inspiration to us all. The open road awaits, inviting us to embark on our own cycling adventures, push our limits, and embrace the joy and freedom that riding brings. So, let’s saddle up, ready to conquer new challenges, explore uncharted territories, and create our own stories on two wheels. The possibilities are endless, and the next great ride is just around the corner. Get inspired for your next cycling challenge and beyond by following James Golding on Instagram. 

James Golding: Road to RAAM

Whether you're seeking motivation, thrilling adventure stories, or practical tips to elevate your own cycling endeavours, James Golding's extraordinary journey has something to offer. Embark on more unforgettable ride articles through his inspiring experiences, and prepare to be inspired to push beyond your limits.

About the Author: Trek

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