What is it?
Adventure Racing is a multi-discipline endurance sport for teams. The disciplines involved in any race may vary from event to event and can include abseiling and rock climbing, canyoning, coasteering, roller blading, swimming or scuba diving. The disciplines of navigation (known in the USA as trekking), mountain biking and paddling (kayak or canoe) are almost always included in every event.
The larger races take the winning teams at least five days to complete with the remaining teams having to meet cut-off times at particular checkpoints in order to complete the whole race within ten days. Entry fees for these long races are thousands of dollars per team. The shortest (sprint) races take the winning teams at least two hours to complete and are the most popular, costing participants about $100 to enter.
Events are conducted by commercial organisations with sponsorship from companies that provide some of the prizes. Prize money is sufficiently high in some countries (up to US$100,000 for the first-place team) for some athletes to be professional adventure racers but travel costs all but rule out any Australian-based athlete from being a professional adventure racer.
During 2003 and 2004, TeamAROC were Alina McMaster, Tom Landon-Smith, Matt Dalziel and Nigel Aylott. They were a successful combination, winning the Australian GeoQuest and XPD events. In 2003, they competed in two races in the USA, coming second in the Primal Quest and first in the Wild Onion.
Tom and Alina run the adventure racing company, AROCSport, conducting shorter adventure races mainly in Sydney and Canberra. For more info, see the AROCSPORT website. Matt is a product development manager for the outdoor company, Sea to Summit, in Hobart.
NAMSF training programs
NAMSF is sponsoring a short but intensive training program to be held in Melbourne during October and November 2007 and culminating in the Kathmandu adventure race on 18 November 2007. It is suitable for people new to the sport of adventure racing with some basic fitness levels. Find out about our current training program here.