Arkansan to make World Record Cycling Attempt.

I first met Tarzan about 7 or 8 years ago. We were both racing in a sprint adventure race series that is long gone. Of course, I was on a team and he was racing solo. You see Tarzan has this unique ability to spend hour upon hour alone, while pushing himself beyond the physical limits of most humans.

Tarzan on the Race the Base Trail Run.

Tarzan on the Race the Base Trail Run.

Over the years I was but a bystander as Tarzan took on ultra cycling events. His Facebook page was filled with training days consisting of 200 and 300 mile bike rides through the hills of central Arkansas. Then there was the Race Across America (RAAM). And then another one. Record setting bike rides crossing the country, days and nights of saddle time.

Out on RAAM, 2012.

Out on RAAM, 2012.

Ultra cyclist Kurt Searvogel (52) of Arkansas, known as Tarzan in the cycling world, will attempt to break the HAM’R, Highest Annual Miles Record this year. In 1939, Tommy Godwin cycled 75,065 miles – an average of 205 miles per day. An outrageous physical and mental feat that is incomprehensible to most anyone who rides a bike, even those who consider themselves ultra endurance athletes. Kurt Searvogel will need to ride over 206 miles every day for one year to beat this record – he can’t afford a bad day!

Tarzan leading out in the Arkansas state criterium race shortly after completing RAAM.

Tarzan leading out in the Arkansas state criterium race shortly after completing RAAM.

Chasing ideal weather and long straight flat roads, the venture will begin in Florida starting January 10, 2015, staying in the sunshine state for the first few weeks of the year before heading west towards California. The route will zigzag all over the United States as he also aims to ride in numerous races and events including RAAM Race Across America for the third time.

XTERRA Epic race at Iron Mountain.

XTERRA Epic race at Iron Mountain.

“In 2011 I was presented with a challenge of riding more than 200 century rides and covering more that 25,000 miles (once around the earth) for the year. At the end of the year I finished up with 212 centuries and over 27,000 miles ridden. I was pretty damn proud of myself until someone posted about Tommy Godwin and his world record of 75,000 miles in one year. Was this even a real thing that could be done?” says Kurt Searvogel. “Then, a few weeks ago the UMCA or Ultra Marathon Cycling Association stepped in and announced the rules governing the attempt. I read the rules and without a doubt said YES, I CAN DO THIS!”.

Beast Mode

Beast Mode

“Anyone who knows Kurt and has watched his athletic endeavors over the years would be hard pressed to bet against him. His signature mental fortitude and enduring strength will serve him well as he launches his assault on this seemingly untouchable record.” John Foote – UltraRaceNews

The challenge has begun with two more ultra cyclists, Steve Abraham of the UK and William Pruett of the US, competing to break the HAM’R Highest Annual Miles Record.

Also watch the Arkansas Outside Facebook Page for chances to be a part of this historic ride during the next year.

To find out more see the Tarzan Rides website and follow the Facebook Group RARacers.

 

As part of a team at the Scott-Tucker-Scott Race.

As part of a team at the Scott-Tucker-Scott Race.

UPDATE: CNN ran this article on Englishman, Steve Abraham a competitor in the HAMR this year. He feels that Kurt is too fast to do this. Marathon cyclist begins record attempt. Our money is on Tarzan.

Comments

  1. Tommy Goodwin set the record in the uk (not Florida) where the roads are not as long (more slowing & braking) where the roads are up and down (not nice n flat) and where the weather is rubbish even on a good day. So no comparison if you ask me.

    • Joe Jacobs says:

      True Readdin, I believe Kurt intends to set the record riding throughout the US including competing in the Race Across AMerica (RAAM) which I would think has elevation changes that would top anything Tommy Goodwin did in the UK. (link to his known routes, http://www.tommygodwin.com/routes/) Also, there was no governing body setting the rules and verifying Mr. Goodwin’s achievement as there is today.

      I don’t think anything that Kurt does diminishes what Tommy Goodwin did. He obviously did it on poorer quality roads on less modern equipment but I still think that being the first to achieve that distance in over 75 years and with rules imposed will be quite a feat.

    • Back 70+ years ago nutrition was not as good nor was the equipment….Really 75,000+ miles in 1939???????????? That is mind blowing if true for 1939, let alone 2015

  2. Steve Abram is trippin’. Kurt isn’t “that” fast…

    (Joking… Kurt and I have raced each other a little in the past)

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