A Tour of Polish National Parks at The Adventure Trophy
This year’s European Adventure Racing Championships is being hosted by The Adventure Trophy in Poland and has attracted an entry of 17 teams with racers from Slovenia, Estonia, France, Finland, Russia, Holland, Spain, and of course from Poland.
They are currently in the early stages of a 533km course, which includes specific orienteering stages, ropes sections and some inline skating, as well as trekking, MTB and an opening kayaking stage, which is the only one on the water. Looking at the maps there is going to be some technical navigation (and good dot watching too.)
The organisers are promising a scenic course, one which passes through 6 National Parks and there will be extensive areas of forest with the vast majority of the climbing in the first half of the course. Teams have been warned about the likelihood of mosquitoes and to wear long gaiters for the extensive undergrowth in the forest.
The race certainly got underway in an attractive location, with a kayak start beneath the Czorsztyn Castle on the reservoir of the same name, set between the Pieniny and Gorse mountains. The race had good weather for the start and the 54km kayak stage, which took them on a circuit of the reservoir and then along the Dunajec River after portaging down the dam.
The leaders after the first stage were the two best known teams, so the race started to form, with Red Fox Adventure (Russia) and Seiklushunt (Estonia) disputing the lead and pulling away from the rest of the teams. This continued into stage 2, a 49km trekking circuit in the mountains with some tough night navigation, which failed to split the two lead teams.
Only into the third stage, 142km of mountain biking, with a rappel at Kramnic Rock, did the lead pair separate with Red Fox Adventure pulling away from the Estonians on the hilly forest trails. In 3rd and fourth place Intersport Adventure Team Slovenija and Gymcity AR of Poland are also having a close race.
There is still a long way to go of course, and you can follow the race on their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ADVENTURE.TROPHY and via the live tracking at http://event.trackcourse.com/view/adventure-trophy-2019-arec/en