Opening round of the World endurance Championship kicks off this weekend. And what an opening …Race across Italy is an incredibly tough Ultracycling non stop endurance race and will start next weekend the 29th April 2017 from Silvi Marina. Crossing three regions, two times into the Appennine touching both the Tirrenian and the Adratic sea, 808km with more than 10.000meters of climbing this makes race across Italy one of the toughest endurance races world wide.
Race across Italy is qualifying race for the famous 8000km Race Across America , it is a World Ultracycling Cup’s Race (with a value of 60 points). The cream of the cream endurance atheletes from around the world will battle it out maximising points to be crowned world champion.
Jason black states … This very same time last year i stepped up to the start line in Italy, I’d trained and prepared so well physically & i was in cracking condition and super excited to get stuck in… within minutes from rolling of the start line the weather broke riding the first 300km into an incredible storm with rain filled headwinds making it really tough going. That continued through the night riding high into the mountains the weather turned to snow. With the freezing conditions, driving wind i was soaked wet to my core and my body was in free fall, I could feel nothing, making simple tasks of changing gears, braking or simply holding onto the handlebars was a huge challenge. I was completely shaking in my boots and numb to my core, I couldn’t eat or drink. I kept pushing & pushing and fighting the fight to simply stay going “I was nearly there” with my support crew of Michael black & Boyd Robinson willing me on. Life in the support Veichle was equally as tough with the cars windows steamed the guys trying desperately to dry my cloths on there knees using only the cars heater …. life on the bike & car was difficult if not hell. By now i was 34hrs non stop on the bike when finally with 90kms to go the oil ran out of my engine .. I’d lost my breath with a right lung practically collapsed, i was in a terrible state & completely hyperthermic. It was over i physically couldn’t turn the paddles one more reveloution … dissaponting as my race was run.
Since then ive spent the winter months remembering & visulising that feeling of disappointment, lost & defeated but positively reflecting knowing that it wasn’t my physical or mental ability that stopped me it was the factors beyond my control. Ive been here before of the greatest mountain in the world where mother nature rules the weather roost, a reminder once again she is the real boss.
So leaving next week ive a date with destiny, unfinished business with the roads of Italy & a few wee hills. Ive set my goals high (be rude not too) firstly lets finish the race but I’ve set it even higher im chasing that qualification slot for race across America meaning i need to race to finish RAI inside 37hrs straight… no stopping no sleeping no peeing… well.
I’ve worked so so hard trained daily putting in hour after hour using the great outdoors & mountains, running swimming biking gym & core as my strength foundation combined with a new endurance coach and nutritional coach i haven’t left a stone unturned for my 2017 endurance season. What’s within my control “I’m in control” what’s beyond my control is in the “hands of another”.
I’m ready .. I’m rider number 24 setting of at 11.20am this Saturday morning … we will post updates if you’d like to follow our progress. It all wouldn’t be possible without the support of Renault Ireland (highland motors) which im a proud ambassador for this year. Blueface looking after my cloud & communication platforms, Aura leisure centre supporting my physical conditioning , Velo revolution providing my race clothing , Castle cycles Raphoe supporting bikes and bubblegum & diesel for all brand development & management.
Music on – World off …..its time to get Hipster.