Christoph Strasser first to finish Transcontinental Race No8 2022

Austrian ultracyclist Christoph Strasser is the first to finish the 8th edition of the Transcontinental Race (TCR), having reached the finish line in Burgas, Bulgaria today. 

With a daily average of 477.12km, Strasser covered an estimated 4,578.52km in nine days, 14 hours and zero minutes. 

According to the tracker, his average moving speed was 24.50kmh. 

Once Strasser’s route is verified by the TCR organisers and given the green light, he will then be proclaimed the race winner. 

Image credit: Transcontinental / Charlotte Gamus

The Transcontinental Race is a self-supported ultra-distance bike race across Europe, founded in 2013 by the late Mike Hall. Riders plan their own route but must include several Control Points and parcours as laid out by the race organisers. 

The race started in Geraardsbergen (Belgium) last Sunday at 22:00CEST.

This year, the Control Points were in the Ore Mountains (Czech Republic), Italian Alps (Italy), Durmitor National Park (Montenegro) and Parâng Mountains (Romania).

Whilst this was Strasser’s first TCR and his first self-supported race, he has a host of ultracycling wins and records to his name. 

He is a six-time winner and record holder for the fastest time at the Race Across America.

In July 2021 he rode more than 1,000km to smash the world record for the greatest distance ridden by a cyclist on the road in 24 hours.

But the race is ongoing…

Image credit: Transcontinental / Tomás Montes 

Whilst Strasser is the first to finish, the TCR is ongoing with a potential sprint finish lined up for the remaining podium places.

At the time of writing Krystian Jakubek and Adam Bialek are vying to be second and third to finish, whilst Pawel Pulawski and Ulrich Bartholomoes are hot on their heels.

Bartholomoes, a key race contender and a favourite alongside Strasser, has not had an easy TCR with crashes and mechanicals on the gravel parcours. 

After battling on, the German was left somewhat in the dark after his chosen ferry for the Danube crossing was closed due to low water levels, so he had to ride an extra 100km through the night in order to make the next one.

The 2022 running of the event is the first for three years due to Covid-related postponements, with the last winner being Fiona Kolbinger in 2019.

Kolbinger continues in the race and is currently in place 8th.

Watch the rest of the action unfold here.

Featured image credit: Transcontinental / Sam Dugon