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|Friday, Day One: [NEW pics]
Saturday, Day Two: [HERE]
[HERE] for the Race Stories,
provided by Sleepmonsters.com !
[HERE] for the Leaderboard,
provided by Sleepmonsters.com !
The race course has been shut down. All teams that are not being driven
in are off the course. Teams still on course are being co-ordinated with their
support crews or shuttled in by race staff in time for the awards and banquet
set to start at 5:00.
There was a mechanical problem that destroyed one of Wild Rose's bikes, which required the Albertans to treat their high end mountain bike as a scooter and push it, one legged, for the remainder of the bike leg. Lucas Rosnau balanced himself in his running shoes on the narrow SPD's of the bike. 'Rose' Mike Brown said that Lucas 'made better time scootering the bike then the rest of the team pedalling'. Unfortunately, it was likely the act of pushing the bike like that for some 30 kms that eventually swelled Lucas' ankle to the point that he couldnít walk on it. The team had to withdraw and hike out to their support crew, while Lucas was picked up off the course by staff. The team was a little melancholy but took the situation well, commenting that they still had great unity, spirit and co-operation despite the adversity they encountered.
Sports crossed the finish line in
the darkness of early morning, at 4:41 A.M. Waiting for them at the finish
was their support crew and a cheering host of hardcore locals, race staff and
volunteers that stayed up to see them in. With no access to an oven with which
to cook the traditional post-race pizza with, and with calling Domino's Pizza an
impossibility, SRS was served up some hot slices the only way they could be
cooked - fresh off the BBQ. They didnít care, wolfing down the stuff and
jubilant at victory and an invite the 2004 World Championships race, which is
also next year's Raid the North Extreme.
Just behind SRS, regular course finishers Jimmy's Night Out, wearing their red bibs earned at the Parry Sound Raid, came through at 5:37 A.M. in good spirits. It was a couple hours until the second place advanced course team, Kevin Wallace's Gears Racing, were seen hauling their canoes up the portage into the finish area. The Gears crew was psyched at their race and finish, earning one back from the 'sleep monster' after having their Raid the North Extreme '03 race go wrong just hours from finish just last month. We hope to see the bike-heads of Gears at next year's Worlds! Coming in for third place honours were Frontier Adventure Racing event regulars and Raid the North Parry Sound winners team Taiga, hustling in with the risen sun at 8:41 A.M.. Captain Jodi Bigelow had promised to buy the team and support crew breakfast if they came in before nine, so it looks like Jodi is out the price of 6 brunches in Mattawa. However, his team will get the invite with the other of the top 5 advanced course finishers to that Worlds race.
Team Running Free was pumped to earn their spot for next year--John Yip commenting that "this was the hardest race we've ever done, the pace was crazy--we RAN the 20k trek to get that spot to Worlds. It was like doing three Salomon Adventure Challenges back to back - we were always aware of who we passed, who was near to us and who had passed us." The Running Free crew picked at the "char-BQ'd" pizza that was at the finish line, captain Ted Jennings joking around with a disappointed Wild Rose team and their support crew about the 'pizza omelettes' they were chowing down on.
Phoenix came through just after Running Free at 10:27, the second team to finish the regular course. Spirit was the fifth place advanced course finisher. They came in half an hour before the cut off at 11:21 to claim the fifth Worlds spot. Big Dave Hitchon was last seen carbo-loading on BBQ'd pizza, this time perfectly cooked.
Infiterra Sports (13:09), Hunger (13:59) and Fusion (15:30) all have finished the course and are back at the Ecology Center. Race withdraws have been posted to Sleepmonsters.
Race organizers had estimated that the fastest
teams would arrive at the finish line, just outside the Canadian Ecology Center,
at 21:30 tonight. The estimate was off as the lead team,
Simon River Sports, unclipped from the
ropes at CP9 only a half an hour ago. This would put them, if they can keep up
their pace, under the finish line at around 3:30 in the morning, Sunday. We will
update the leaderboard and post notice of CP times as they arrive at basecamp.
With SRS leading throughout most of the race, the rest of the field has been chasing and is strung out in a long line all the way back to CP5 at Mitchell Lake. With 29 teams spread out across 100 kms and 7 checkpoints, RtNC has kept race staff and volunteers jumping.
Frontier Adventure Racing would like to wish team Hungerís Laura Rowe a happy, if somewhat belated birthday! There is some debate as to the actual day, and we have no idea how old she is, but we wish her all the best in her birthday adventure race! Check out the photo of her and her teammates wearing their festive party hats in the updated photo section for Friday!
With rain still only a threat,
the weather has cooperated today to keep all teams but one moving steadily
through the course. After a seven-hour trek of off-trail and old ATV tracks,
Simon River Sports has increased their
lead, arriving at CP7/TA3 at 9:05 this morning. SRS is still being
chased down by GearsRacing.com
(10:45) and Taiga (11:04), and a
cluster of teams jostling for position in the hours following.
Alberta's Wild Rose suffered a frustrating bike mechanical problem midway through their ride Friday night. After Lucas Rosnau's rear derailleur broke down, the team scootered the bike nearly 30kms. Fellow westerners Spirit came to the rescue with their spare derailleur, and the team's bikes were ready to go at TA3 this afternoon with the team in 9th place.
"We're loving this", said the girls of Team KBC - Screaming Carrots, arriving at CP5 - the start of the long off-trail trekking section - in buoyant spirits. With only one member of the team having any adventure racing experience, they find themselves at the middle of the pack, ahead of many more experienced teams. They headed off into the bush full of energy, still running without sleep.
It is still grey, overcast and
threatening to rain here in Mattawa, however the weather is a definite
improvement over the smattering of sideways rain and choppy, wind-swept waters
of Lake Temagami that greeted the 8:15am start of the Raid the
North Championship race yesterday morning. The lead teams had reached CP4 as of
midnight last night and most teams have progressed past CP4/TA2, with several
staying and resting, eating and prepping with their support crews.
Team Stinging Nettles and Y3X found themselves arriving at CP3 at almost the same time. Y3X had camped on course for a couple of hours to try to regain some energy - feeling the cold and wet late last night. They called out on their radio, hoping to contact some staff that could network them to their support crews and some dry clothes, instead they were helped out by the Nettles, who answered the radio call out and lent them some of their own clothes and gear. Very cool of the Californians - helping some Northern Ontarians with clothing for the cold!
Team B.R.A.T. was forced to withdraw in the early morning today. The team was having a great race, in ninth place overall on the paddle and doing well despite the wind. Team captain Ashley Crozier of Toronto felt that the team's strongest discipline would have been the trek and the group was eager to get into the advanced section at CP7 to see how well they could progress. All members of B.R.A.T. are rested and warm at the Canadian Ecology Center cabins.
All teams are through the first
CP, although complete times in and out have not yet been reported into Basecamp
at the Canadian Ecology Center. The rain has lessened and the
forecast for Saturday calls for sunshine, which should please racers, staff and
Photos and video to come as soon
as they are available. Communications with the race course and CP's have been
sporadic; the weather in the Mattawa area has dictated much of our staff's
activity since the start of the race this morning. With rain and winds forecast
through the night, safety on the race course is priority one.
Go to Sleepmonsters to send a message to a team. We will be getting your words out to racers at TA's and the support and words might help keep the spirits and psyche up! Make sure to address your message clearly. Also check
Sleepmonsters.com for Susan McKenzie's fantastic glimpses into the Raid the North Canadian Championship race.
The Sleepmonsters leaderboard can provide a breakdown of team's times into each CP and how teams ranked on each CP to CP section of the race, just go to the leaderboard and select the CP for more detailed information.