If you follow the various adventure racing posts that I write, you’ve probably heard me say that 2011 is shaping up to be the best year for the sport in some time. The calendar is full of great events all over the planet, and teams have a plethora of great options to choose from. They can now add one more to that list.
Last week it was announced that the Swisse Mark Webber Tasmania Challenge is returning after a three year hiatus. As the name implies, the event will take place in the wilds of Australia’s Tasmania, and will be hosted by F1 racer Mark Webber. This will be a five day, stage-race covering more than 350km (217 miles) that will run from December 7-11 of this year, and pit teams of two in three different classifications. Disciplines will included running, mountain biking, navigation, and paddling of course.
The race has lined up an impressive group of sponsors, not the least of which is Swisse itself. The company has committed itself to backing the race for three years, which means the Tasmania Challenge is here to stay for awhile. They’re joined by Tourism Tasmania, LG, Red Bull, and others in getting behind this event.
Curiously, the Tasmania Challenge will overlap with the Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge, which has held down the anchor spot on the adventure racing calendar the past few years. While the two races offer different experiences, you can’t help but wonder if some of the more prominent Aussie and Kiwi teams/athletes might stay closer to home to compete in this race rather than head to the Emirates to race. Hopefully there is enough room for both races to co-exist, but it is great to see so many options available.
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