Day 2 of Adventure Racing (AR) World Series Championships saw race leaders Seagate (NZL), complete the 37km paddle on the Clyde River on dusk. Leg 7 is the 58km mountain bike ride from Shallow Crossing to Yadboro Flat situated on the outskirts of the Morton National Park
The mountain bike leg is an undulating ride on unsealed roads, through the Southern Forests of the Shoalhaven. The estimated time for this leg is 4.5 hours for the top teams. Riding into the night with a solid lead, Seagate used this leg to catch up on some sleep in the Transition Area (TA), completing the leg in 6 hours. Adventure Medical Kits (USA) and Estonian Ace Adventure (EST) a couple of hours behind.
Yealands (NZL) retired after Leg 7 due to a bike mechanical issue. Merrell Adventure Addicts (RSA), also had issues with the gears on one of their bikes. However they decided to continue racing, riding the bike in a fixed gear.
In the early hours of the morning of Day 3, the teams commenced the Budawangs Wilderness Trek, through the rugged mountain range within the Morton National Park. This is a tough 45km trek with approximately 1,700 metres elevation. It starts with a steep climb up to Castle Gap to collect the first Control Point (CP), then continues along tracks through valleys and over climbs to arrive at Nerriga. The trek takes in spectacular caves and cliffs as it winds through the mountain range.
As well as traversing difficult terrain, the tricky part for the team navigator might be the confusion of tracks. Some tracks appear on the ground but may not yet be marked on the map. This can slow teams down, especially when travelling at night, when visibility is very low.
The hot, humid day saw temperatures rise to over 30 degrees Celsius. Seagate completed the scenic leg throughout the morning arriving in good spirits at Nerriga early afternoon. The transition area (TA) at Nerriga is the Nerigga Hotel. This means teams can enjoy hot meals for the first time in the race
Then they will continue on to Bungonia for a 70kms mountain bike ride, to do the caving in Leg 10. Here it will be compulsory for all teams to stay for at this TA for 5 hours regardless of how long (or short) the caving takes.
As the day closes, the top teams are finishing the trek. Columbia Vidaraid (EST) move to second place behind leaders Seagate. Adventure Medical Kits (USA), Shotz Sports Nutrition (AUS), and Estonia ACE Adventure (EST) round out the top 5 of the leaderboard.
Event Information: live.arworldseries.com and http://xpd.com.au