Congratulations to Joe Lawhorn for setting the Ohio Crossing (E-W) & (E-W-E) on March 20th-21st, 2021 in the Male, Solo, Standard bike categories.
Joe covered the first 233 miles of the E-W in 11 hrs 45 min for an average speed of 19.83 mph. The old mark was set by Larry Graham in 2007 at 12 hrs 34 mins.
Joe covered the entire 469 miles of the E-W-E in 30 hrs 28 minutes for an average speed of 15.39 mph
World Ultra Cycling Association – Ohio Crossing (E-W) & (E-W-E) – Joe Lawhorn Rider Narrative
On March 20th, I clipped in at the Ohio/Pennsylvania state line on my trusty Fuji Norcom. I chose to use my Irwin race wheels and Kenda Valkyrie Pro tires. To get the record, I had to pull all the stops and was using Rudy Projects latest TT helmet and a Mach 5 skin suit from Pearl Izumi. To start the day, a March morning in Ohio. The temps were in the 20s as I started. But I blocked out the cold and proceeded to Time Trial the best I could. The first 210 miles were absolutely amazing, we did have 1 catch. I did lose about 7 minutes due to a train. Around mile 210 there was not one, but four different bridges being worked on within a three mile span. I was able to still cross the first three, the roads were just closed to motor traffic. But the fourth one, the bridge was completely gone. Now according to WUCA rules, as long as I had control of my bicycle could dismount and carry my bicycle. So, I unclipped and threw my Norcom on my shoulder and waded across the creek crossing that was about waist deep (I am 6’1″, so it was deep). Biggest problem there was that was at 7pm at night and the temps had dropped back down to the 30s and I was only wearing a skinsuit. The next 23 miles were extremely cold to make it to the Indiana border. My support vehicle who had to go around said they could see the water dripping off me. But success I made it to the border and broke the record by almost 4hrs. With an average speed of 19.8 and a time of 11hrs and 45mins for the first 233 miles. My support car did have clothes I could change into
After a quick stop I started on my 2nd leg of the challenge. Trying to make it back to Pennsylvania. The hardest part was a stiff headwind and the air temperature was 25 degrees. Cyclists make their own wind-chill and just the normal wind-chill made the next 9-10hrs more challenging than expected. I also did a bike change, I exchanged my Fuji Norcom for my Fuji SST (which is Fuji’s aero road bike before the Transonic). The reasoning behind this is an aero road bike is more responsive then a TT bike. Midwest March, we still have tons of sand and grit on the road. Plus, riding at night, low visibility I might come up onto a pot hole or debris in the road I might need to bunny hop or change direction fast. I also outfitted the bike with clip on aerobars and I was running 28c tires. They would give me better grip in the corners with the sand/grit and on
descents. The course had over 10K of elevation. Not my fastest work, but considering the extremely cold temps, the fact I blazed the first 233 miles at a hard effort and I was wearing restrictive layers of warming gear. I did survive the night and eventually made it back to the PA border. Official clock time was 30hrs 28mins. But moving time on the bike was 28hrs 5mins. I did lose 2hrs and 23 mins for traffic, a train, the detour, a water crossing and changing of clothes. But carrying a 16.7mph average over 468 miles non stop with over 10K of climbing, I am happy with. Who knows now that the Double Trans Ohio Record is set, maybe one day I will target it again with better weather condition