Not a real fan myself but TTR is a rather leisurely game with the right amount of flexibility. Apparently there are also T2R championships in the US, as well as numerous other games- http://www.boardgamers.org/yearbook/index.htm.
from external sources-" When playing top players I pass up big tickets all the time in favor of smaller ones close to each other that allow me more flexibility in my route. Against a medium level player, however, big tickets are often easy to make and win with although even then you have to be careful. Like any game, a lot of strategy depends on the level of your competition.
"There is some advantage to having all West coast tickets over East coast, and also to having tickets of at least a moderate value in close proximity to each other, Most of the time it only takes 2 tickets, the initial 2, and a great route to win the day."
"Although the gameplay is fairly simple, there is a lot more strategy than is evident at first.Taking more destination cards is also a tough decision. If you get a card that you already have half complete it is great, but get one that you might not complete and you could turn a possible win into a major loss.
"Generally the person that draws the longest destination cards is the winner in every game I’ve played. This doesn’t sound so bad until you consider that the destination cards you draw is pure luck.Other than that, I haven’t found anything compelling about the tactics or depth in this game, it all seems very processional (also what I think about the game)."