One of the more unique and inspiring adventure races on the annual schedule will take place this weekend when the Adventure TEAM Challenge gets underway in Grand Junction, Colorado. Like most other adventure races, the event pits teams of outdoor athletes against one another in mountain biking, kayaking, rafting, climbing and trekking stages. But what sets this race apart from any other is that the five person teams must contain at least two disabled athletes, one of which must be in a wheel chair.
The name of the race says it alls. This is indeed a TEAM challenge. The members of each of the squads must work closely with one another if they hope to get very far in this event. One of the disabled athletes will most likely be using a handbike to make his or her way through the course, so assisting that person through some of the more challenging sections is a must and towing while on the bike will be a common activity as well. But the disabled athletes are not just mandatory gear for the Adventure TEAM Challenge, they are an integral part of the team and their determination are a good example for us all.
When I first became aware of this event a few years ago I was left in awe of the men and women who compete in it. Adventure racers are a different breed to say the least and this race exemplifies their spirit completely. I love that this race is so inclusive for athletes that wouldn’t normally be given an opportunity to compete in a traditional adventure race.
The Adventure TEAM Challenge will take place McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area starting on Friday, Sept. 13 and running through Sunday, Sept. 15. For more information and updates visit the race’s official website.
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