January 12, 2009 – For most riders, the single greatest goal of their TransRockies experience is to reach the finish line each day in one piece and within the time limit. By doing so, they remain officially scored in the event and on track for the treasured finisher t-shirt and medal””mementos of their achievement. While riders come to the start line with ample physical and logistical preparation, the singularly wild and rugged nature of the TransRockies means that there are always unexpected obstacles to overcome along the way to the finish line.
In 2009, with the help of some dedicated members of the TR family, we’re launching the TransRockies Ambassador program, a new on-course rider support program unique among epic events. The TransRockies Ambassadors are a team of two riders who will ride the course each day from start to finish providing additional mechanical support as needed to help riders fix mechanical issues and get to the finish line. They will start at the back of the field and gradually work their way forward as the stage progresses. Ambassadors will carry an extensive selection of tool and spares and be easily identifiable on course with specific number plates and backpack markings.
In 2008, we initiated the TransRockies Bike Sweep program to help us fully deliver on our commitment to leave no trace on the trails that ride each year. While the bike sweeps carry spares and can offer emergency rider support, they are often hours behind the bulk of the field. The Ambassadors will offer this same support from within the field.
It should be noted that the TR Ambassador program is not intended to provide a competitive advantage for teams hoping to carry less equipment and there will be a nominal time penalty imposed for those needing Ambassador assistance to complete a stage. The Ambassador program is intended to improve the TransRockies experience by helping riders overcome the worst mechanical issues and providing assistance, advice and encouragement as needed to get everyone to the finish line.
The two riders who will inaugurate this program are five-time TR finishers Simon Parker and Jim Seethram. “There’s really nothing worse for a TransRockies participant than to getting evacuated off course to the finish line”, said Parker. “The Ambassador Program will hopefully build upon the great TransRockies camaraderie and spirit of cooperation and will help some riders avoid the sweep and have the great TransRockies experience they imagined when they signed up.”
For more information on the TransRockies or to sign up for 2009, visit www.transrockies.com.