Monday, February 20, 2012

Patagonian Expedition Race Update: Closing In On The Finish

One of the toughest adventure race on the planet, the Patagonian Expedition Race, continues in Chile today, where 12 of the 20 teams remain in the competition and are heading towards the finish line. As usual with this event, the weather has been unpredictable at times, the course has been unforgiving, and things haven't gone exactly as planned. Still, the athletes are battling the environment, the elements, and each other, to take home the top prize.

As of this writing, there is a familiar name atop the leader board. Team Adidas TERREX-Prunesco has passed through the final checkpoint and are now headed for home. They seem like a lock to once again claim the championship, although Team EastWind and the GearJunkie/YogaSlackers are still in pursuit. At this point however, it appears that those two teams are dueling it out for podium positions behind he defending champs. Team Kauri and Cyanosis are currently further back in fourth and fifth place, but not completely out of striking distance should someone ahead of them falter or make a navigational error.

I'm told that paddling conditions early on in the race were extremely challenging, with a few boats taking on quite a bit of water on the heavy seas of the Magellan Strait. One team was also forced to withdraw after they went off course on one of the early kayaking stages. Returning to dry ground didn't necessarily  help maters either, as high winds and occasional rain have made the course a challenge in general. Of course, this is all typical for this race, so no one competing there should be too surprised.

Barring some strange turn of events, look for Adidas to wrap up another title by tomorrow, with most the remaining teams staggering in by the next day. The race is scheduled to end on the 22nd, so teams will likely be short coursed to make it home by the end of that day.

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