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Discussion: Expedition Africa!!

in: Adventure Racing; General

Sep 1, 2019 11:46 AM # 
broots:
If you aren't following EA this year, you're missing arguably the most unique AR ever hosted.

Live tracking with multiple media links. http://www.kinetic-events.live/

Facebook will likely be more important than normal, maybe even more so than the tracking map. Scroll down on the FB feed a few posts to see an explanation for why the tracking map might be tough to make sense of.

"Live tracking - PLEASE READ

This years race is very unique. We are squeezing a 350km race into a 18 km (11 mi) long by 6.5 km (4.0 mi) wide island. See the attached image containing the suggested route and all checkpoints. You will agree that it would be impossible to follow. We are therefore only making the route visible in sections during the race.

Please note that even though the team positions auto-update, you will need to refresh your browser every now and again in order to view the route changes and checkpoints visible on the map.

As a general rule, the race is in a clockwise direction (transitions) but cycle and hiking legs could go in any direction. Some transitions are visited multiple times. The leaderboard (automated geofencing) will display the first recorded visit to each transition. The SPOT trackers will be operating on the edge of the Globalstar satellite network, so updates may be less frequent than usual (approx 20 minute intervals).

Expedition Africa 2019 Rodrigues will not only be an adventure for the competitors but also for you, our dot-watchers. Enjoy the journey!"

Just started a couple of hours ago. Sailing start, boats capsizing, steady winds...imagining the teams doing it again later in the race with all their gear, including bikes...could be some carnage. With all the salt water, this race could really destroy some bikes:(

Looks incredible though!
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Sep 1, 2019 6:05 PM # 
phatty:
Trying to figure out what's going on with Team Spirit. Looks like they've either made a nav error or someone's hurt. I hope it's the former...
Sep 1, 2019 7:40 PM # 
abiperk:
Check out the SM description of the starting legs: https://www.sleepmonsters.com/races.php?article_id....

Craziness! Impressed to see ThisAbility from the US in fourth off the swim.

I wonder what happens to the mobile TA model, for those teams whose boats have been impaired.
Sep 3, 2019 11:00 PM # 
broots:
Hmmm. Lionheart, one of the two US and three North American teams appears to be out. Tracker at the finish...

Haven't seen any updates.
Sep 4, 2019 3:05 AM # 
Conman:
It's been one of the hardest dot-watching races I've ever followed due entirely to the complexity of the course with over lapping segments and such. At least the tracking software is top notch; some of the other under-developed (my opinion) tracking tools used by other race directors would render this race entirely un-watchable.

The last 24 hours has become a head-to-head slug-fest by first four teams, then two dropped off and now it's just the Russians and the Swedes. It's neck-and-neck over the last 5 stages. I think it's going to come down to who can keep their wits or manage their sleep enough to cross the line with the fewest mistakes. The best updates on things at the pointy end have been coming in from someone (family member, I think) at the race with the Swedes (Greener Adventure Team on Facebook).
Sep 4, 2019 9:32 AM # 
Bash:
Team Blizzard ran past a CP near the end, giving the lead back to Greener Adventure near the end of the race. Congrats on a well deserved win!
Sep 4, 2019 9:34 AM # 
Bash:
Spirit Canada is having a great race - currently 14th of 60 teams.
Sep 4, 2019 1:11 PM # 
Bash:
Turns out Greener Adventure Team had already taken a 2-minute lead before Blizzard ran past the CP - but that sealed the deal. Their final gap was 15 minutes. SM has a great article about the end of the race for the leaders.
https://www.sleepmonsters.com/races.php?article_id...
Sep 4, 2019 8:45 PM # 
Carbon's Offset:
Yay, Spirit!!
Sep 6, 2019 2:56 PM # 
Bash:
Spirit finished in 10th place! Woot!
Sep 6, 2019 3:42 PM # 
Stark RavingMad:
Great finish by Spirit!
After WT turn around glad to see everything held together for a fantastic finish! Congrats Team!
Sep 7, 2019 12:57 AM # 
Work4justice:
That is awesome!
Sep 17, 2019 1:57 PM # 
FB:
Hey All!!

Just getting back to reality after some time spent in Mauritius and then readjusting to work. Was a pretty cool race. Sooo proud of our team. We just kept moving forward and having a blast and were pretty shocked to hear VERY late in the race (I never asked in the TA's) that we were pushing top 10.

Certainly not the toughest race, but I was expecting a 'cakewalk' and that's part of the reason I decided to do this... after giving up racing several times ;-) ... it looked like a lot more adventure than race. Turned out to be considerably harder than anticipated, but awesome and a big tip of the hat to the RD's. To pull that off was incredible!!!

A few of you know that I was struggling to walk at a fast clip going into this race but my team was stellar. Very tough (mentally) to race when everyone else is doing the 'heavy lifting' but its pretty amazing what can be accomplished with a little bit of adrenaline, awesome teammates and good meds ;-) … and Laura cracked 2 ribs in an endo the first night, but didn't get that confirmed until we returned!!

Should also note that due to my issues (including bad eyesight!) Will took over the Nav for at least 50% of this race including probably all of the last 36 hours and he killed it as a first time navigator.

Everyone who knows Mike will know he was just Mike the whole way. Ultimate teammate!
Sep 17, 2019 3:13 PM # 
Bash:
Thanks for the inside scoop, FB. Fantastic racing, especially given your team's injuries. And well done to Will - wow!

P.S. Talk to me if you want ideas about navigating with bad eyes.
Sep 17, 2019 3:56 PM # 
JayXC:
I was hoping for info on bad navigating with good eyes... ;)
Congrats FB and team!
Sep 17, 2019 5:49 PM # 
Bash:
Lol, enjoy your good eyes while you still have them! I sure miss them. :)
Sep 18, 2019 5:58 PM # 
FB:
I'll definitely be grateful for any Nav tips for the visually impaired!!

One thing I did(n't) do was not put any markings on the maps after the first one. There are definitely some disadvantages to this, but I found any highlighter lines or anything else I wrote on the maps just made it that much more difficult to read it. Probably helped that the legs were so short that I could get away with that, but it didn't seem to negatively impact Wills Nav not having the maps 'marked- up'.
Sep 18, 2019 7:23 PM # 
Bash:
I only highlight maps if it's a road/trail route with turns to follow. I got out of the habit of marking maps after getting the map on the clock in orienteering races. I write some notes on AR maps well away from any features I might use to nav, including areas that might come into play if I change my mind about the route or overshoot or whatever.

My best tips are good lighting (including two lights at night - one for the map) and glasses from DualEyewear.com or similar. If I'll spend any length of time in the forest, I usually go for clear lenses rather than sunglasses. Even my photochromic Dual Eyewear lenses make it more difficult to see map details in the shade. It's annoying but I'm grateful for all the years when I didn't need glasses. :)

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