Augusta spoilt us today with splendid weather and near perfect racing conditions for day one of the 2018 Augusta Adventure Fest in south west WA.
The format for today’s racing was quite different to previous years with 4 standalone races allowing competitors to choose the disciplines they most prefer or challenge themselves by completing all 4 standalone races.
First up was a 2km ocean swim conducted in Flinders Bay. Despite some light riffles on the surface the sun was out and everyone was excited to get underway. Brother / sister duo, Kyle and Courtney Lee took out the male and female events, commenting that they “enjoyed the clear water conditions and friendly camaraderie amongst competitors.
The 15km ocean paddle was next with 70 paddlers taking on the crashing shorebreak at the rivermouth then paddling south to Seal Island adjacent Cape Leeuwin amidst the rolling swell and light southerly breeze. Competing a U-turn at the island provided for some great down-wind paddling with some friendly runners following swell that brought John Wilkie and Tara Smith home as first male and female.
Augusta really turned it on for the 3rd race of the day, the 15km trail running race which started on the huge granite domes at the base of the mighty Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse. Runners were treated to an incredibly scenic course that took in the rugged west coast shoreline, Cape to Cape single track and then towering Karri trees as they raced all the way back to Augusta to complete an iconic trail run comparable to the best races anywhere in the world. Dougal Allan from was first male home whilst Julia Ketts was first female.
The final race of the day was a challenging 35km mountain bike race that again provided a scenic tour of the region’s variable landscapes and hinterland terrain with Damn Willmore and Kristen Gadsdon first home to complete an epic days racing.
The true champions of the day were the competitors who completed all of the races one after the other. Named ‘Adventure Warriors’ we congratulate all those who completed all races, especially Dougal Allan and Kristen Gadsdon who took home the overall male and female titles at the end of the day.
The race’s new format was certainly a talking point amongst competitors and spectators with a variety of opinions expressed, some saying they liked the new standalone format as it was more social because you could chat to fellow competitors in between races. Meanwhile other competitors said they preferred the non-stop nature of a traditional adventure race and close-nit team environment.
Racing continues tomorrow with the more traditional Augusta Adventure Race that includes a 1km ocean swim, 6.6km trail run, 13.5km MTB and 6km inlet paddle, followed by the popular Junior Survivor challenge for kids.
All results can be found HERE http://rapidascent.com.au/AugustaAdventureFest/Results/ex/6/2018