RACE TO ALASKA ORGANIZERS SHIFT GEARS
June 05, 2018
In the burgeoning tradition of the race there are those teams that are pushing the boundaries. For the first time ever there is a prone paddler attempting the race. Team Extreme Sobriety will attempt to complete the race laying on his stomach and paddling the board with his hands all the way to Ketchikan. “Yeah, and he intends to ride a bicycle from Ketchikan back home on Bainbridge Island.”
Daniel added, “We also have a 40’ international offshore racing boat from the 80’s (Superfriends), a team trying to be the first to complete the race by pedal power alone (Take me to the Volcano), 2 teams returning (PT Watercraft and Trak Kayaks) are trying to beat the world records they set for fastest solo and fastest kayak with no sail and another Stand up Paddler (Torrent) who is using the race to fuel a documentary to raise awareness about Traumatic Brain Injury and PTSD in veterans.
There is no end to the stories this year. And the tracker is a good place to start.The tracker is a free to view map that allows online viewers to follow each team and even connects viewers to team social media pages.
Daniel and the media film crew will follow the race on a variety of power boats recording and interviewing the teams as they find their own way to make it to Ketchikan.
“We kind of make it up as we go,” said Zach Carver, the creative mind behind most of R2AKs videos. “We go where we have to to get the shots and stay up editing and cutting while the boat moves to the next location. It’s a kind of 24 hours a day operation. And it’s during that time that we start to see the stories of the race grow and become tangible.” All of the video clips and well as daily updates and the tracker can be found online for free.
Like with the question of who will win, it’s anybody’s guess what stories will emerge from the brave fleet of racers as they move northward. “One thing is for sure,” says the Race Boss. “As these teams sail into the forgotten reaches of our coastal wilderness, the story that does come out will be incredible.”
The Race to Alaska started in 2015 with competitors racing 750 miles from Port Townsend, Washington to Ketchikan, Alaska. It is the longest human and/or wind-pow- ered race in North America.
The Race is limited to vessels that are human and/or wind powered and have included a wide array of designs from a paddleboard to a 32’ foiling catamaran. Unlike many similar races, there are no separate divisions or handicap system for the different vessels. Racers cannot receive any planned assistance during the race including food drops and resupplies.
The race was dreamed up by three friends in a beer tent who wished to inspire people to adventure, to start a conversation about engineless voyaging, and compel people into the world of watery adventures that are possible from a limited platform.
The first team to cross the finish line is awarded $10,000. Second place receives a set of steak knives.
While most teams participate for just the mere sense of accomplishment upon arriving in Ketchikan, there are the two first to finish prizes as well as many sponsored side bets. In years past, these bets have included thefi rst vessel under 20’ to finish and the first boat to be swept by the Grim Sweeper.
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Editing by Mary Kauffman, SitNews
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