The pre-race information warned teams to expect a cultural element in the Xtrail Expedition Race and rumours began to circulate it might be Yurt building or camel riding. Race Director Wei Jun revealed it would have a compulsory 2 hour stop to make traditional noodles from scratch in the small village of Hamu. The food was welcomed and most teams had the chance for some much needed sleep (inside a Yurt for most) before their compulsory stop concluded.
While the lead teams quickly completed this challenge just before sunrise, the rest of the field arrived at the “noodle cp” throughout the day.
Team MMD sat around a small table enjoying their food and reliving moments from the first part of the race. Eugenio Della Valle “On the paddle last night we could see every star in the sky it was so clear”. Dave Jennings said “We met this nomad family on the first trek and they offered us freshly cooked flat bread” Christine Perry said “I am feeling ok but have a sore throat and am losing my voice, but maybe the boys are happy about that!”
Mont Adventure Racing arrived in the late afternoon and Lee Rice said “We arrived in the village and there were so many people wanting to have their photo taken with us, in the end we just had to keep walking or we would have been there all night.”
One member from Chinese team Xin Jiang was walking tentatively at the end of the 47km Leg 3 trek but was determined to push on. The remainder of the race is mostly cycling and will give sore feet some relief.
Towards the front of the field the race is still hot between three lead teams Haglofs Silva, Thule Adventure Team and Redbull. These three teams arrived to the ropes section together, completed a 40m abseil down a cliff and arrived at the next transition within one minute of each other. Adventure Medical Kits are recovering from an early navigation error and have moved up into 4th position one hour behind the lead pack.
Canadian team Tecnu decided to withdraw from the race at CP21 and will be taken to the finish line.
Watch the race unfold live at http://live.arworldseries.com/xtrail/
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