Adventure Racing News
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2009 Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge
posted Thursday, April 2, 2009 by Yak @ 5:06 PM - 0 comments

In keeping with the last two years, when early December was chosen as the ideal period, both from the point of view of athletes and organization, for adventure racing's Blue Ribbon finale, the Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge will be held from the 4th to the 9th of December.

With the technical verifications due to take place the day before, most teams will be arriving on the 2nd and leaving on the 10th. After 6 days over a course worthy of the world's most international field and matched only by the quality of the encounters with Abu Dhabi's vibrant culture, a lucky few will take with them the "glittering prizes" but no doubt all will leave enriched by an event that places the pleasure of participation on a par with intense competition.

Last year's race included the innovative ADTA awards, that took some fortunate 'local' teams from Britain, Sweden, Slovenia the USA and South Africa, all with no international race experience, handed them entry fees, plane tickets and the opportunity to rub shoulders with and learn from the very best.

A wise decision indeed as team DART-nuun from the USA even managed to finish well up the overall ranking in 13th place. Competing against this group of handpicked rookies were a broad range of local teams from The Emirates, the Republic of Ireland, Denmark, Switzerland, Poland and more, all racing hard in an effort to pick up one of the to ADTA Continental Rookie Prizes (2,500 USD) on offer. This "carrot" met with a resounding success as 3 of the winning rookie teams finished in the top 10 and the outstanding TEAM NZ were narrowly beaten into 2nd place. Both schemes will be maintained for 2009 with races and organizations participating in the ADTA Awards being announced in the very near future.

In total contrast to many other headline-grabbing races held around the globe, the ADAC is designed to not only appeal to the world's top teams but also to those with the ambition of becoming one themselves but who, as yet, might lack sufficient international or big race experience. There are no blind dates, no dead ends, no outs, no disqualifications - you pay your money and you take your chance but everyone gets to finish the race one way or another. Only in this way are all teams able to complete what is after all the objective of any sporting event: to participate and be enriched by the competition, rivalry and ensuing camaraderie. To learn from the experience, come back again and win.

What's more, to make the race even more democratic and encourage teams to compete, despite the current economic vicissitudes, options are being explored with the aim of reducing costs for all teams. This will ensure that a race of this caliber offers a sporting challenge rather than an economic one to as broad a spectrum of teams and athletes as possible.


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