Pete Penseyres of Fallbrook, pedaling at a record pace, increased his lead on the eighth day of the Race Across AMerica. He was 2,749 miles into the 3,120-mile race Sunday. Lon Haldeman of Harvard, Ill., was in second place, 175 miles behind. Haldeman had trailed Penseyres by 136 miles on Saturday. Matt Beerer of Garden Grove was in third, 262 miles back. If they maintain their pace, they, too, according to race officials, would break the record of 9 days, 2 hours and 16 minutes, set last year by Jonathan Boyer of Berkeley.
In the women's competition, Elaine Mariolle of Berkeley was in first place, 2,378 miles into the race. Susan Notorangelo of Harvard, Ill., was in second, 86 miles behind, and Shelby Haden-Cliston of Greensboro, N.C., was third, 98 miles back.
Eight riders--six men and two women--have dropped out of the original field of 20 men and six women. On Sunday, Georges Helaouet of Quebec had to quit because of swollen hands.
Penseyres, whose pace is 15 hours ahead of last year's record time, is expected to arrive at the Boardwalk in Atlantic City tonight at about 7:30 (PDT). The race began July 6 in Huntington Beach.