Monday, June 12, 2006

2006 Urban Adventure Challenge

Saturday (June 10) was the third annual Urban Adventure Challenge - an urban adventure race in Saskatoon. There were only 12 teams this year - I think some people got scared off by the excessive amounts of running in last year's race - 20 km is a lot unless you've trained for it, and this is meant to be a "fun" race. Of course, this year there wasn't much running at all! Instead it rained the whole time, not hard, just a steady drizzle. But it was warm enough when you were moving so it didn't really matter. Better in many ways than being too hot.

As usual it was a fun race. They even managed to include some canoeing for the first time on an artificial lake in one of the suburbs. For fun, we even got to ride the miniature train in Kinsmen park!

We biked about 30 km and I would guess we ran about 10 km in total in the three running legs. I'm not sure how fast the winning teams finished - my team took about three hours for 7th or 8th place. We would have done better but we gambled on a shortcut biking which ended up costing us some time and in a short race like this you don't have much chance to recover from setbacks.

I had Jeff and Suzanne on my team. Jeff and I have raced together lots - including all five of the Prairie Pitches, the last two Urban Challenges. We couldn't get our normal thirds so we asked a friend of Shelley's to join us. It was Suzanne's first adventure race but she just ran a half marathon a few weeks ago so she was in good shape. Probably better than Jeff or I since we hadn't trained much yet this spring. My lungs were probably in good shape from Cho Oyu but I hadn't biked or ran for months.

Now I have to get busy organizing the Prairie Pitch. After five years of racing in it, it will be a change to be on the other side of the fence. Tony, who has organized it up till now, will be racing this year so it'll be a switch for him too. Tony has done a good job of organizing the Prairie Pitch (and the Urban Challenge) - I hope I can match the standard he's set.

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