After spending 111/2 days on a bicycle, Catharina Berge sounded both exhausted and energized at the same time.
The Visalia ultracyclist pedaled into Atlantic City, N.J., on Thursday evening, becoming the first solo woman since 2001 to finish the grueling Race Across America.
“I actually feel pretty good, but I’m glad it’s over,” Berge said in a phone interview. “Now I can catch up on some sleep.”
Berge’s official time was 11days, 11 hours and 20 minutes. The 38-year-old Swede was on the bike between 18and 20 hours a day, sleeping an average of 3 hours per night.
Along the way, Berge said she gained an appreciation for the vastness of her adopted country. “It was incredible -â‚¬ beautiful and so much different,” she said. “It was so lovely, and to see it on a bike at 15 mph was just incredible.”