I was all set to race with the same partner as I did in 2011, however, she had to cancel last minute and I ended up racing with her mother instead. We had a few weeks to get her mother into mountain biking and familiar with orienteering. Turns out, she was a natural at orienteering, strong on her feet, and fast in the canoe. Having only been on MTB trails once before tackling a 6 hour adventure race, she did amazing on the bike sections! She never fell far behind in the trails and stayed strong through the entire race. We got a little backed up on the orienteering course, but we did manage to get enough checkpoints to place 3rd in our division and walk away with some Moosejaw gift cards.
The order of events was something like this: 2 mile run to pick up our course map, bike on paved and 2-track sand, canoe, bike on sandy 2-track, mandatory orienteering section, mountain bike through a section of Yankee Springs, main orienteering section, bike to finish, enjoy pizza and be glad we just missed the rain!
Spring Fury 6hr Adventure Race
Pontiac Lake Recreation Area - White Lake, MI
This was race #2 of the season and unfortunetly I had come down with a terrible case of Broncitis the week beforehand. The doctor said I was well on my way to pnuemonia if I hadn't come in when I did. But, since I was racing with another newbie, I didn't want to back out of the race. Needless to say, it was probably not the best decision - I got sick on the bike course 3 times and was breathing like an asthmatic smoker on the trekking sections; however, I was perfectly fine during the canoe section - I could have done that all day long!
Given that the race took place in an area that I knew very well and we were riding 6 miles of one of my favorite MTB trails - it was slightly frustrating to not be able to keep my pace or endurance up.
The order of events was something like this: canoe through heavy winds and white caps, bike backroads, mountain bike, orienteering section. Regardless, we didn't do as terrible as I thought - we still placed 16th overall (of 40+ teams).
Get Your Bearings 4hr Adventure Race
Huron Meadows Metropark and Brighton Recreation Area - Brighton, MI
Race #3 of the season also came with yet another new teammate whom I was introducing into the wonderful sport of Adventure Racing! I had a lot of confidence in Jill, as she was a competitive Ironman who also had orienteering experience in her past. Her only weakness would be the mountain biking section, as she had never ridden on trails before, BUT we had a good 2 months to get her comfortable on the trails. In the week prior to the race, she was noticably faster in the trails and a lot more confident.
We couldn't have had better weather conditions on race day - sunny, low humidity, low winds, low blood-sucking bugs, but it was still a little hot (80 degrees). We both woke up feeling great and I just knew it would be a good race day! The order of events was something like this: trail run with mandatory checkpoints, canoe, bike on backroads and 2-tracks, mountain bike, bike on backroads, orienteering section.
Sadly, my bronchitis is still not gone and I wasn't able to run during much of the orienteering course, BUT we still managed to CLEAR THE COURSE!! (meaning, we got all the checkpoints out on the course.) I haven't cleared a course since I raced with my original teammate back in 2005-2007 - so this was an exciting day!