Oklahoma or Arkansas, The day 7

After the "long" rest "RAAM style," Sakurai pedals through the towns of Oklahoma with a better average speed. Our pace car stops to replenish food and support items, and the Rider presses on alone. This far into the race it is rare to ride alongside his RAAM competitors because of the long distances that separate us. For each rider, it is just as much a battle to race alone with themselves.

Sakurai is 12 hours behind the top rider. Knowing this, we can calculate the average speed that we need to finish before the deadline of 48 hours after the top finisher. This calculated speed and time is Sakurai's main goal.

Wolfgang, who was 3rd place last year as a rookie, is now in top position. He makes the whole race much faster. Our temporary calculations show Sakurai is on the border line to make the absolute limit of 48 hours behind the first racer. If our calculations hold, then only 4 riders of the 19 riders can finish. Of course, change is possible because it is hard to believe that Wolfgang will keep his pace until finish...he may slow down. The two veterans Chew and Kish's speeds are also fast.

Ahead in the lead, they likely check each other and then adjust their pace or rhythm to get rest. The riders' combative instinct also works to keep position in this hard battle for Number One.

From our perspective, currently in fourth place, we hope for some changes in the top group. Any changes will affect our 48 hour limit. We calculate the various possibilities and do our best until Savannah.

Right) Sakurai's riding style is more vertical than before.

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Photos, Graphic Design and Copies Daisuke Tomiyasu