Salomon Adventure Challenge
Kawarthas Long Course
10 - 14 hrs

August 9, 2003

More Distance, More Time, More Strategy!

The highly anticipated Salomon AC Kawarthas Long Course took place out of Buckhorn, ON with 70 participating Coed and Open teams from as far as Calgary, AB and Montreal, QC. This racecourse promised a new type of challenge for both experienced and rookie teams alike - pace, strategy, navigating in the dark, sleep deprivation, and teamwork all had to be considered in this 10-14 hr, 65 km event.

After receiving racecourse instructions and maps at 2030 on Friday night, taking the time to formulate a strategy, the teams then jumped on buses for a transport to a 0400 start along Anstruther Lake Rd on Saturday morning. Although pitch black at the time of the race start, a sea of 210 headlamps lit the area akin to a swarm of fireflies.

FAR Inc.’s bright orange Land Rover Discovery lit the first 100m of the 10 km trek and at the sound of the word “GO”, teams were off into the night. The opening trek featured a 4 km gravel road run before jumping into the bush for a lengthy bushwhack to CP2/TA1. Teams Beowulf of Etobicoke, Flash 5 of Midland, and White Squall of Parry Sound crushed the time estimates in this section by almost 0.5 hours and were quick to transition to canoes.

The 6 km bushwhack offered teams the opportunity to put strategy into practice. Some teams elected to take lower ground in an effort to cut off some of the distance while others zig-zagged the area to keep to the elevation and avoid the swamps and marshes. In the end, some teams took just 1 hour and 15 minutes while later teams came in (smiles and muddy jerseys in tow) in almost 5 hours.

Once transitioned into canoes, teams were treated to a 19 km paddle through the heart of the Kawarthas. This section began at the East end of Long Lake and worked its way through the lake and river system to the Northwest end of Mississagua Lake and CP4/TA2. Portages and connecting marshlands had to be negotiated along the way but the real strategy piece was choosing a route after CP3 – take the long way around via water or take an additional portage and come to the TA from the South.

Team Hub Media of Windsor proved to be the fastest paddlers in the field while a few later teams ended up taking some more ‘creative’ routes to the TA – south first, and then along West shore of Mississagua Lake.

The final portion of the race was an epic 36 km mountain bike to the finish line. The trail featured a mixture of 4x4 track, single track, gravel road, ‘new’ road (inside joke for the participants!), and paved road that wound its way South toward Buckhorn. Unlike all other Ontario-based Salomon AC’s of the 2003 season, the course was drier but the intermittent marshes and swamps made for some interesting obstacles and very muddy teams.

Interestingly, the teams who led earlier in the race were now being challenged by the chase pack. Team Freaks of Nature of Mississauga jumped to the fore and clocked a blistering time during the first portion of the bike before breaking a freewheel on the rocky roads after CP6. As well, Team Kinetic Konnection of Windsor and Team Chasse-Galerie of Lac-Ste-Marie, QC showed their mountain biking skill and chased down the top of the pack.

In the end, it was Team Canyonero of Toronto who after remaining steady in the opening 40 km of the racecourse turned on the afterburners to hit the finish line in 1st place closely followed by teams Beowulf and Diabetes/Phat and Dirty (only 30 seconds and 1 minute behind respectively). Congratulations to all teams as 68 of 70 teams reached the finish as this was a very challenging and technical Salomon AC racecourse – get ready for another Long Course race in 2004!

See you in Frontenac!

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For Full & Detailed Results and an entire Team Listing CLICK HERE! Make sure to click through each page in the spreadsheet to see all sorts of statistical information.

Rank  Team Name  Location Finish Time
1st (Open)    Canyonero Toronto, ON 7 hrs, 38 min
2nd (Open)    Beowulf Etobicoke, ON 7 hrs, 39 min
1st (Coed)    Diabetes/Phat and Dirty Toronto, ON 7 hrs, 39 min
3rd (Open)    Kinetic Konnection Windsor, ON 8 hrs, -- min
4th (Open)    Hub Media Windsor, ON 8 hrs, 3 min
5th (Open)    Chasse-Galerie Lac-Ste-Marie, QC 8 hrs, 7 min
2nd (Coed)    White Squall Parry Sound, ON 8 hrs, 18 min
6th (Open)    Priority One Cambridge, ON 8 hrs, 20 min
3rd (Coed) Calgary, AB 8 hrs, 27 min
7th (Open)    Strange Brew Whitby, ON 8 hrs, 35 min

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