Team Brigham Health Sets Record in Race Across America
At 3:10 am on Sunday morning, as most of the east coast slept, Trish Karter, Neil Withington, Susan Lynch, and Margaret Thompson were capping off a grueling week-long race across the country. They were given 9 days to complete 3,000 miles, 12 states and 170,000 feet of elevation.
They did it in less than 7.5.
7 days, 11 hours, and 4 minutes to be exact. The specific numbers are important. After all, Team Brigham Health didn't just finish the race, they also set the Race Across America record for the 60-69 age group in the 4-person women's team category.
"It wasn't as hard as I expected," joked Susan, who confessed that having the night shifts had relieved her from some of the traffic and weather-related drawbacks her teammates had experienced.
"We had our share of scary parts," admitted Margaret, who was regularly on the day shift. "From the intense heat, to hail, to the winds that would blow you over, to yesterday's tropical storm. And we always had traffic."
Team Brigham Health has some fun with their medals at the finish line in Annapolis, MD.
Regardless of time of day, of course, there is no playing down the tremendous difficulty of this race.
To give their achievement some context, the Race Across America is about 30% longer than the Tour de France. Racers must also complete the distance in roughly half the time, with no rest days. Simply completing a 24/7 race across the country was a feat unto itself. Doing so in record-setting fashion, all the while battling unexpected elements, just makes the accomplishment that much more awe-inspiring.
"I feel a little emotional," said Trish as the team took the podium for their post-race interview.
"I'm very proud of it," added Neil, "and I don't think it would have been possible without this team. I really think that's the reason we're here. That's why we got across the country."
Photo Credits: Race Across America