Showing posts with label Primal Quest. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Primal Quest. Show all posts

Primal Quest Adventure Race Underway in Tahoe

A legendary adventure race has risen from the ashes, and is currently underway near Lake Tahoe in California. The 2015 edition of Primal Quest began yesterday, with 11 coed teams of four setting off on a 400+ mile (643 km) expedition-length course that is expected to take up to seven days to complete. The start of the race marks the return of one of the truly epic brands in the sport.

If there are two races that have epitomized adventure racing in the past, it is the Eco-Challenge and Primal Quest. Both were considered the toughest, most grueling races on the planet back in the day. Eco-Challenge – which was created by TV mogul Mark Burnett – was the event that brought adventure racing to a world stage, making a much larger audience aware of the sport for the very first time. It drew millions of viewers who mesmerized by the amazing athletes who spent days racing through some of the most challenging environments on the planet. But the race folded up shop back in 2002 and passed the torch on to its spiritual successor – Primal Quest. That even ran from 2002 to 2009 with some truly epic courses of its own. 

Despite a few rumblings of a possible return over the years, PQ remained off the AR schedule for a long time. It has returned at last however, with a new race management team that hopes to rebuild the brand back to its original status. 

Right now, the teams taking part in the race are into the Sierra Nevada Mountains, where over the next few days they'll be running, mountain biking, paddling, and climbing their way along the route. As I write this, the lead teams are through the early checkpoints and are well into the competition. Team Bones from the U.S. is running in first place through CP 8, while Team GodZone of New Zealand is currently in second through CP 6. They're being chased by the Team Too Much Fun Club, who are in third through CP 6 as well. Considering there are 31 total checkpoints in the event however, there is a lot of racing yet to come. 

As someone who served on the staff of the previous two Primal Quest races, I'm glad to see PQ back on the schedule. Hopefully it continues to be a successful event in years to come. Good luck to all the teams racing this week as well. Have fun and stay safe. 

It's Happening! Primal Quest Returns in 2015, Registration Opens Saturday!

There has been a lot of rumors circulating over the past few months about the possible return of Primal Quest, one of the biggest events ever in the sport of adventure racing. After disappearing from the AR landscape for more than five year, it seemed the possibility of PQ's resurrection were quite dim. But not only will the race be back in 2015, registration for the event opens on Saturday.

When the news first broke about Primal Quest's return back in June, there was a lot of speculation about who was behind the race, and whether or not it was actually going to happen. That was an understandable reaction at the time, as we've been teased more than once about a potential new Primal Quest race. Yesterday, I exchanged emails with Maria Burton, the new CEO of PQ, and she assures me that the event is moving ahead, and that there is a lot of excitement and momentum behind it.

At this point, we know that PQ will return to its original format, which pits coed teams of four against one another in standard adventure racing disciplines, such as trail running, mountain biking, and paddling. The event will take place August 22-29, 2015 in the Lake Tahoe area. We're promised a 7-day, non-stop race, covering more than 400 miles (643 km) through the wilderness of the Sierra Nevada mountains. Race management is hoping to attract as many as 40 teams from around the world to compete.

As a fan of adventure racing, its great to see Primal Quest finally returning next year. But it should be pointed out, that while Maria has ties to the original event, this isn't the same team that brought you the previous PQ's. In fact, she tells me she is still putting her team together, but that the staff will be ramping up in the weeks ahead in preparation for the race next summer. The goal is to create an event that is the spiritual successor to past Primal Quests, with the hopes of creating a sustainable race that will be with us for years to come.

Hopefully we'll learn a lot more about this new incarnation of Primal Quest in the days ahead. But for now, teams interested in racing in the event should start making their plans. That includes registering for the race on Saturday.