Rudy Project, Italian designers of award-winning sunglasses and road/aero helmets, are proud to announce their new partnership as the Official Helmet of the World’s Toughest Bicycling Race, Race Across America (RAAM). During this 4 year collaboration, Rudy Project will ensure all competitors have access to the most comfortable, technically advanced and aerodynamic helmets available, which will keep them cool, focused and safe during their incredible 3 000 mile race from CA to MD.
“You have to be a little crazy and willing to push your body to the ultimate limits to race across the entire United States in under 12 days, and that’s why I knew we had to partner with this epic event,” said Paul Craig, President and Co-Founder of Rudy Project North America. “It’s not just a physically grueling race, but it’s a real mental feat as well. Just imagine what your body has to endure being in the saddle for that long! You better have a good music playlist, great nutrition and, above all, a comfortable aerodynamic, well ventilated helmet. That’s why we’ve previously worked with multiple RAAM teams to supply their gear, but now we’ll be supporting everyone who takes on this challenge.”
“RAAM is excited to join forces with Rudy Project. For years, they have set the highest standard for their products, as RAAM has done in the racing platform,” said Rick Boethling, RAAM Executive Director. “The highest quality helmets and eyewear are a crucial part of a racer’s equipment to ensure safety and comfort over the duration of any race.”
Race Across America is one the most respected and longest running endurance sports events in the world. RAAM is seen as a pinnacle of athletic achievement not only in cycling circles, but the greater sporting community as well. Beginning in Oceanside, California, the race travels 3 000 miles with 170 000 vertical feet of climbing, finishing in Annapolis, Maryland. Competitors may participate solo, or on 2-, 4- and 8-person relay teams. Many racers also raise money for charitable causes, collectively leading to more than $2 million donated annually.
Unlike the three great European Grand Tours (Tour de France, Vuelta a Espana and Giro de Italia), RAAM is not a stage race. Similar to a time trial, once the clock starts, it does not stop until the finish line. RAAM is 30% longer than the Tour de France and racers must complete the distance in roughly half the time allowed for the Tour. Solo competitors ride 250-350 miles a day, while teams ride 350-500 miles, all on a few hours of sleep daily.
Rudy Project has supported award-winning competitors throughout the years, including Team Enduring Hope, who won the overall 2-Person division in 2015, and Team Love, Sweat & Gears, which featured the only U.S. woman to ever medal in triathlon at the Olympics – Susan Williams.
“We are so thankful for the support of Rudy Project in our journey across the country!” said Williams. “With our trademark neon green helmets and glasses, we didn’t have to worry about any issues in those areas and had no trouble picking out our teammates going into transitions!”
The RAAM organization also directs Race Across the West (RAW), which travels the first 860 miles of the RAAM route. It follows the same format and runs concurrently with RAAM, but does not include an 8-Person relay division.
2016 marks the 35th edition of Race Across America and the 9th edition of Race Across the West. Rudy Project is proud to support what is expected to be the largest field and most extensive coverage in the event’s history!
About Rudy Project
Performance Italian Sunglasses, Helmets, Goggles + Rx/Prescription Eyewear Solutions • Unbreakable ImpactX-2 Lenses • Designed + Crafted in Italy for over 30 years • Family Owned Since 1985 • #1 Most-Worn Aero / TT Helmet at the IRONMAN World Championships in Kona, Hawaii for the last five consecutive years • #1 Gold Medal Winner in Winter Olympics (Torino) • Over 100,000 sponsored athletes and ambassadors • www.rudyproject.co.za