Oceanside, San Diego, June 13 (CNA) Taiwanese cyclist Fu Sheng-chieh set off Wednesday in the solo men's category of the Annual Race Across America (RAAM) with the dream of winning gold.
Fu qualified for the RAAM -- a grueling 12 straight days of racing over 4,828 km -- after completing a 24-hour qualifying race in Italy last year. Fu is the first Taiwanese person to participate in the RAAM and the only Asian participant in this year's competition.
The route designed for the 2012 RAAM is divided into 55 sections, starting from Oceanside Pier in Oceanside, California and ending at the City Dock in Annapolis, Maryland.
The RAAM is widely regarded as the most difficult cycle race in the world, as the racers must complete it in 12 days.
The RAAM, which started in 1982, attracts cyclists from all over the world. Fu made a special point of bringing a Republic of China national flag with him, which attracted the attention of the other racers, who all came to greet him.
Fu said that participating in the race has been his dream for 10 years and that he never imagined he would have the chance to achieve his dream two years sooner than his expected goal. He added that he also wants to use the race to test his own ability.
(By Oscar Wu and I-Ling Chen)