As the apocryphal saying goes, “may you be cursed to live in interesting times”. With so much uncertainty around events, and with the Rogue Raid just under 7 weeks away, I thought it a timely opportunity to update you on all the news from the course.
If you are like me, your inbox has been flooded with messages from the CEO of every company you’ve ever handed your email address to with messages on how they are managing the corona virus situation. Because we’ve had a few enquiries, I’ll just clarify the situation as it pertains to the Rogue Raid.
At this point in time, we are confident the Rogue Raid will continue as planned. One of the great things about Adventure Racing is that, as a relatively a niche sport, our competitor numbers are relatively low. AR is also a non-contact sport (well, if you are doing it the right way) and conducted primarily in remote outdoor areas and with the rogaine format teams are generally spread out. Event numbers fall well below the 500 participants set as cut off by authorities. As always, competitor safety is our priority and we are confident the event can be conducted in a manner that minimizes risks to a reasonable level for competitors. Having kept an eye on many other major outdoor events, this appears to be the general trend in this space at the moment.
In an effort to conduct the safest event possible, a number of precautions will be put in place:
- The pre-race briefing will be optional to attend, with the relevant points from the briefing recorded and released on YouTube in the 24 hours prior to the race and also emailed as a PDF document.
- There is a bus shuttle for the 24 hour teams from race HQ to the start line. If teams are not comfortable with catching the bus, they are welcome to use private transport to the start line, however they will need to make prior arrangements to be able to collect their cars again after the race if note dropped off by a supporter. If you think you will take this option, it is important to let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org prior to race day. Indeed, teams of 2 may wish to seriously consider this option as it will help ease timings and logistics for the kayak drop on race morning (more on this later).
- The first leg of the race is a kayak leg. Instead of a mass start under a banner for the money photo shot, teams will be allowed to spread out along the shoreline with their boat before the gun goes to avoid close contact.
- We will be taking additional precautions around sanitation when it comes to the water refill stations out on course.
- We are reviewing our procedures around the post-race meal and presentation ceremony. Certainly no hugs or hand shakes for the victors!
In the unlikely circumstances that we need to call off the race (for example, a complete state wide lock down), the event will be postponed to a new date. This is tentatively scheduled for late July or late October in 2020. The standard Raid Adventures Refund, Changes and Cancellation Policy will apply. And finally, it should go without saying that if you are sick or in quarantine, please don’t attend the race.
News From The Course
With that out of the way, it’s full steam ahead with course setting! Given how accessible the race is to a major metropolitan area, I’m continually impressed with the variety of terrain and challenge it offers up. Tons of single track riding, plenty of off-trail navigational challenge and open water paddling awaits teams. I’ve tweaked things this year to have many more CPs than usual, but a tighter spread on the points value, which could possibly mix up the strategic challenge of the race when it comes to deciding which sections of the course to focus on.
The initial stats are in from each course:
Rogue Raid 24: 213km course – 74 check points in total
- 32 – 59km of kayaking
- 0 – 54km of trekking
- 22 – 100km of mountain biking
Rogue Raid 6: 54km course – 28 check points in total
- 2 – 6km of kayaking
- 0 – 20km of trekking
- 11 – 28km of mountain biking
For competitors looking to secure accommodation for the event, there is onsite camping in the campground at race HQ for the Friday, Saturday and Sunday night of the race. This is available for $20 per person, per night and includes access to the hot showers for the period of the weekend.
Camping needs to be booked directly via email at email@example.com and payment can be made via cash on the day. Both 6 hour and 24 hour teams are welcome as are spectators and supporters. Alternatively, refer to the guide to local accommodation and attractions provided by event sponsors the Logan City Council: Explore Logan.
For the first time in its 11 year history, the Rogue Raid will be providing competitors a logistics matrix of the course prior to the race. This will have the order of the stages, their approximate distances, check point number and box logistics. While perhaps less informative than a linear race where stage times can be estimated a bit easier, given the tighter timings for map preparation the logistics matrix should help teams prepare a bit more prior to the race so that they can focus their map time more exclusively on planning their race strategy. The logistics matrix will be emailed on Monday 27 April.
Interested in checking out the competition. The 24 Hour and 6 Hour teams lists can be found via the links. We do have a number of teams on a waitlist for the 24 hour race, so if you are unable to attend, please let us know as soon as possible and we’ll look to transfer your entry.
Teams of 2 – Kayak Logistics
As alluded to above, the race will start with a mass kayak leg. All teams of 2 are in a BYO kayak category and will need to perform a boat drop prior to racing. The boat drop will open at the same time as map handout at 6am and these teams will be provided their maps when dropping off their boats at the boat drop so they can look over them on the return trip to race HQ.
Given that teams will return to the boat drop location for the start of the race, an alternate option is that instead of catching the bus with other competitors, teams can just arrive at race HQ for the map handout and then use private transport (either in a second vehicle or with a supporter) to the start line. As such, teams of 2 need to nominate whether they want to collect their maps from the boat drop location or race HQ. Unless otherwise notified, the maps will be available at the boat drop. It is an approximately 30 minute drive between locations.
Please note that with a BYO kayak category, there are extra levels of self responsibility around your safety. Please ensure that your craft is in a sound, watertight condition. There are stretches of open water paddling on the course which can get reasonably choppy when the wind picks up, so please ensure you are using a craft that reflects your paddling ability – it is always better to opt for a slower, more stable boat that you are more comfortable in and less likely to tip out of than a faster, tippy boat. For teams using closed in sea kayaks, spray skirts and a bilge pumping device are required. Also note that there is a possibility of kayaking at night, so glow sticks attached to person and craft are required, along with access to an emergency strobe light. In saying all this, the kayak stages of the race are a true highlight from the course and will certainly add to the adventure and challenge. As you can see from the above estimated stage distances, you don’t want to be neglecting your kayak training in the lead up to the race.
Volunteers and Thanks
As with any adventure race, the event could not go ahead without the help of a crew of fantastic volunteers. We love our volunteer team and look after them well on race day – if you have any friends or family who want to be involved in the race encourage them to join us as volunteer. There are plenty of jobs to cover including assisting at race HQ, on course safety, manning transition areas, social media and photography. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Finally, a thank you should also go to race sponsors Mountain Designs who are providing a swag of prizes for the race and the Logan City Council.
So, fingers crossed the training and preparation is going well. I, for one, am finally enjoying the cooler change in weather. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Otherwise, I look forward to seeing you on the start line of the Rogue Raid in a little under 7 weeks.
PS – Stay tuned for an exciting announcement about plans for the Rogue in 2021 soon!