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Team Wolcott

About Team Wolcott

Team Wolcott was formed to support the effort of Keith Wolcott, of Charleston, IL, who seeks to complete the 2014 Race Across America (RAAM). Keith qualified for entry in the race as a solo rider by completing the Ultra Midwest 24-Hour Race in 2012 (earning fourth place overall.)

Keith on the 24-hr Challenge

How it All Started

Keith's interest in distance bicycling goes back several years. In 2006 -- just for kicks -- he challenged himself to complete the daily mileage ridden on each stage of the Tour de France (except he did his riding around the county roads of his home in Charleston, Illinois.) It was impossible to find a climb to duplicate the slopes of the infamous Col de Tourmalet, the alpine giant in the Tour de France, but Keith resolved to "keep up" with the Tour by putting in the same number of miles during the same period of time as the Tour. Thus, in 21 days, he rode 2,272 miles on the backroads of Coles County, with an average speed 18.2 mph. In the following year, he repeated the feat, improving his average speed to 18.56 mph.

He first became involved in ultra-cycling when biking friend Keith Cox mentioned, during one of their century rides, the idea of doing a 24-hour race.

"What's that?," Wolcott asked.

He soon found out. In 2010, he entered the National 24-Hour Challenge and completed 323 miles. The following year, he improved his distance to 404 miles in the same event, taking first place in the 50-54 age division and eighth place overall. In 2012, Keith completed 411 miles in the National 24-Hour Challenge, earned 2nd place in the 55-59 age division and tied for third place overall. That same year, he completed 224 miles in Calvin's Challenge (a 12-hour race.) In 2013, Keith finished the National 24-Hour Challenge with 401 miles in 21 hours (the race was suspended for three hours by a storm), placing 2nd overall and 1st in his age group.

But the 2010 24-hour event started it all. "When Keith Cox and I did our first 24-hour ride in 2010," he said, "I really had fun doing it. I've been hooked on ultra cycling ever since."

Supporting Others

Along the way, Keith took on other challenges, such as completing the Ride Across Indiana (RAIN) in 2010, an event for which he provided coaching and training support to a group of his bicycling friends from Charleston. With Keith's leadership and constant encouragement, several members of the riding club Team High Maintenance trained for RAIN by completing several century rides in the summer heat prior to the ride. For some riders, it was the first time they had ridden 100 miles, and the accomplishment of riding RAIN ("One-day, one way" -- 160 miles across Indiana) made it a summer to remember.

Keith and friends at the start of RAIN 2010
Above: Keith and Ellen Wolcott and friends from Team High Maintenance at the starting line of 2010 RAIN. From left: Steve Daniel, Ellen Wolcott (in back), Molly Daniel, John Looby (in back), Lisa Berra, Keith Wolcott, and Sheila Simons. All of the riders were official finishers in RAIN.

It is precisely his generous attitude toward helping others set and achieve their personal fitness goals which inspires the members of Team Wolcott to support Keith in this endeavor to complete the 2014 Race across America. We recognize that this is a daunting and complex challenge unlike any we have individually faced. But as friends, family, colleagues, and neighbors of Keith Wolcott, we have confidence in his integrity, determination, and personal commitment to complete RAAM. We know that he needs a team he can rely upon, and we have all chosen to be a part of this effort. We invite you to join us in offering your support to this effort. We are proud to be members of this team, and we think you'll agree that this adventure is worthy of your endorsement.

Team Wolcott

While We Have Your Attention...

As part of their effort of participating in this national event, Keith and Ellen wish to draw your attention to the good work of World Bicycling Relief. Please take a moment to read about their cause and consider supporting their mission to transform individuals and their communities through the power of bicycles.