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Day 8: One Great Surprise


Editor’s Note: Tim Case, shown above taking a quick nap during a rain storm on Sunday, is cruising east of the Mississippi during the Race Across America. This is a solo bike race that will have him cross the United States in about 10 days. He left Oceanside, Calif., June 8 and had completed 2,103 miles by 1:18 p.m. Monday, passing through Greenville, Ill. on his way to to Effingham, Ill., His team checks in with us daily. Tim is riding for Team Strong Heart to raise money and awareness for Camp Odayin, which is dedicated to serving children with severe heart problems.

We reached the Mississippi three-and-a-half hours early. We were really excited; that was a big deal for him.

We are just so exciting getting to the Mississippi; this is a really big deal. This was part of the disagreement we had with the two team members who left us. They never thought he could get there. We knew all along he was going to get there.

It still was tough, though. Tim had a little bit of an emotional breakdown last night. He was confused. There are always these ebbs and flows. But we got him back to healthy by the morning, and that was our goal.

And yet again, we have come up with a new game plan for his sleep plan, but it is a secret. We have been doing these long days, 18 hours or so. It gets really dangerous toward the end. The new plan is awesome, but it’s a secret.

It isn’t nearly as exciting as our seat, which Tim says over and over; “Saved my life, the seat has saved my race.” Part of it is he forgets he already told us that, but he says it’s like riding on a sofa.

Beyond tweaking schedules and the seat, we are always looking for new ways to find motivation for Tim to help him along. Earlier today, we were going from time station 35 to 36, and I was looking at the race stats on Tim’s iPhone, because I am constantly checking the stats … I thought “oh my god, the Team Strong Heart relay team should be really close.

Literally two seconds later, they were right there. The RV saw us, passed by and got out and clapped. Tim got off his bike for a minute and everybody said hi. It was really good to have that sense of team. This helped him more than they know.

Then we have this other exciting thing he doesn’t know about. Gordon and I are heading to the next check point while the other support vehicle is with Tim. Tim’s parents are driving down and are going to be there at the checkpoint.

He may think he is hallucinating when he sees them.We’ll even give him a few minutes off the bike to hang out with him.

We are going to also ask another local fire department to pull out the engines and give him a little support (he’s a Boulder firefighter). Hopefully they won’t get a call this time.

Basically, this is a really exciting time station. The distractions are going to slow Tim a little, but we have that factored in.

We have to balance time off the bike with giving him motivation. Seeing his parents is well worth the few minutes it will slow him.

That’s it for now.

Michelle Pearl, Tim’s girlfriend and crew member. Dictated to Jacob Harkins.

Other Posts:
Some thoughts from Tim
The Finish
Day 11 1/2
Day 11
Day 9
Day 8
Day 7
Day 6
Day 5
Day 4
Day 3
Day 2

Day 1

See our story on Tim’s quest.

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