YACS: Will Team Yeti Maintain Their Winning Streak?
International teams have been arriving from around the world to compete in the 2019 edition of the Yeti Adventure Challenge Silkeborg (YACS). It is set to be a weekend of adventure with several different distances proposed but SleepMonsters will be focusing on the “Master” course which will be an expedition length course from point A to point B. YACS is the final race in the Adventure Racing European Series (ARES) circuit this year.
The race will start with a prologue beginning in the Silkeborg town square. This prologue, set to go around the town, will be especially spectator friendly as all points are easily accessible by foot. It will be a mass start and the results will decide the team’s starting time for the race.
The roadbook states that the times that the other teams finish behind the fastest team of the prologue will be clocked as a ‘sit down’ penalty in TA3. (And teams will not be able to access their gear during the penalty time at TA3.)
After the prologue the teams will be bussed to the race start line, approximately two hours away from Silkeborg, and the actual race will start at 19:00. The first section will be 65kms on bike and is expected to take between 4-7 hours to complete. With only a few hours of light remaining after the race start, teams will be racing through the night.
Navigation will play a key role in this race as it will be necessary on each and every section. This race is known for its tricky navigation and that fact may well give an advantage to local teams who are accustomed to training in the area.
There are nine teams competing in the Master race, including three international teams from Ireland (Team Kinsale), Germany (SmARt endurance) and New Zealand (Roving Tukies), as well as six Danish teams.
The Danish team Yeti has had an impressive winning streak having won the past five editions of the race. They will be the team to beat but it won’t be easy given that they’re fresh off a win at the ARWS race Raid Gallaecia in May which procured their entry in the 2020 World Championships in Paraguay.
In a pre-race interview, team member Laura Knudsen said that their goal on every race is simply to do the best that they can but that the race results always also depend on how well the other teams race. She added that they’re a local team so they know the terrain well and are strong navigators and that she’s looking forward to seeing some of the ‘wilder’ parts of Denmark such as the west coast.
Team Yeti always races with the same four-member squad and they only compete in a few major races every year. Laura said, “Adventure racing takes so much mental focus during a race that it takes a couple of weeks to come back to normal after a race. Only doing a couple races a year means that we can recuperate and really look forward to and enjoy our next race.”
It will be fascinating to watch the race unfold over the wild, rugged Danish lands and we’ll know by the end of the weekend if Team Yeti been able to maintain their winning streak.