Being one of the long-distance cyclists in Malaysia, I always like to surprise people with the distance I cycle. "Kayuh berapa Kilo?" asks a man in the Mamak stall in Cameron Highland. "300 Kilo dari Simpang Pulai pergi Gua Musang, nanti kayuh balik Simpang Pulai" replies a cyclist in our group during an Audax BRM 300. It is no surprise that local people nowadays asks "How many kilometers you cycle" and not "where do you cycle to" as the ultra-distance cycling has surged in popularity. While we told them that we cycle 300km with a hint of smug self-satisfaction in our voice, the man in the stall replied "We met another group and they were cycling 600km!"
Many cyclists in Malaysia who have completed the usual 160km Century Rides think "what now?" and they start looking for something more challenging. We could see many weekend riders now consider 150km as their usual breakfast ride distance in Malaysia. Ultra-distance cycling is now growing, with cyclists tackling Audax Brevets, self-reliant non-competitive rides that can last days. Few years ago, riding more than 200km was considered something quite impossible to do in 1 day. However, local cyclists today can easily complete a 300km ride within 24 hours and statistic shows that more than 100 local cyclists completed the longest challenge Les Randonneurs Mondiaux that covers 1300km organized by Audax Randonneurs Malaysia in 2022. Welcome to the world of Ultra-distance Cycling, the new benchmark of cycling challenge!
160km Century Rides are no longer challenging to many cyclists, and they are hunting for the next big challenge
It's an Ultra-Distance Race
Unlike Audax Brevet, Race Across Malaysia (RAM) is a race. All Race Across Series Organizers use average speed to determine cut-off times. That enables us to work out cut-off times for RAM300, RAM600 and RAM1200. For instance, the average speed for an official Solo Race Across America (RAAM) rider to finish is approximately 10mph (16kph). However, the RAAM covers mega-distance and they usually require slightly higher speeds for shorter qualifying races. Therefore, for RAM600 we are required to ride an average speed of 11-12mph (18-19kph) and would result in a qualifying standard of approximately 32 hours.
In Race Across Malaysia, there are 4 race categories - Solo Self-supported, Solo Supported, Team of 2 and Team of 4. All 4 categories have different time limit in different distance. Riders who complete RAM600 and RAM1200 within time limit in Solo categories will be qualified for RAAM and will receive a certificate and a letter of invitation to race RAAM. Plaques evidencing the achievement of RAAM Qualified status will be made available for purchase at year end. The RQ Plaques can be found in the RAAM Store. Each rider who has completed the race within the designated time limit - and thus is "RAAM Qualified" - can their own plaques directly from the RAAM Store. The RQ Plaques are $44.99 + shipping (USD).