Conditions: Clear, Cool (68 degrees)
Highlights: Texas State Capitol, Liz Carpenter Fountain, Bullock State History Museum, Eating Hot Sauce, Mellow Johnny's Bike Shop
In the final race of the Xplore inaugural season, Austin set the scene for a fun battle between some of the best known racing teams in the country. A town filled with great food, music, and athletes, it became the perfect setting for an urban adventure race. Teams ran to historic Texas landmarks, battled through eating hot sauce, got dizzy with locals, and got soaked in a fountain, all for the glory of becoming the final Xplore winner of the year. At the finish, it was a familiar racing team and Austin local, Vignette-D that edged out his fellow Vignette competitor (Vignette-JBO) with a time of 1 hour 7 minutes and 8 seconds. Although both Vignettes finished more than 20 minutes ahead of Clubedventures, it didn't do enough damage to drop them from staying atop the Xplore leaderboard and becoming the 1st-ever Xplore Champion and winners of the coveted X-Prize! Congrats to all of the teams that raced in the inaugural season and a sincere thank you for making it so memorable!
Conditions: Clear, Pleasant (75 degrees)
Highlights: Alamo Square, Cable Car Museum, Redwood Park, Embarcadero, UCSF Campus, Exploratorium
Setting a new record for largest crowd ever, San Francisco is clearly passionate about urban adventure racing. With the topography of a natural roller coaster, San Francisco makes even the shortest distance a grueling test of endurance and will. Teams started at the Sports Basement Bryant Street location in the Mission District and navigated their teams to some of the most fun and historic places along the Bay. In true California form, teams visited the Cable Car Museum, gazed at redwoods, and recruited enough locals to help them stretch between any two palm trees. The finish came down to two well-known local teams. In the end, with a time of 1 hour 40 minutes and 34 seconds it was Taintastic! who edged out The Tweedles by nearly 15 minutes, continuing a long-running friendly rivalry between the two teams.
Conditions: Scattered Showers, Cool (65 degrees)
Highlights: Drinking Coke, Fox Theater, Centennial Olympic Park, CNN Headquarters, Steve Polk Plaza
Teams took on our first southern city with high energy and true southern charm. A passing rain shower at the start didn't dampen any spirits as teams set off to a number of Atlanta's most popular sites. Racers interacted with locals to complete checkpoints across the city including singing at Mary Mac's Tea Room and posing like the Olympic Rings. The competition was a melting pot of backgrounds and experience including multiple out-of-town teams, college students, solo racers, and families. In the end, it came down to just 49 seconds between the top two teams. With a time of 2 hours 25 mins 50 seconds it was Team Clubedventures that edged out the win, and got enough points to regain the top spot on the Leaderboard with just two races to go. A spot Clubedventures hasn't held since July. It looks like the battle for the first-ever Xplore Champion will be as close as the finish in Atlanta.
Conditions: Cloudy, Cool (70 degrees)
Highlights: Embassies, National Mall, Old Post Office Clock Tower, Union Station, National Building Museum
In one of the toughest Xplore races yet, teams were stretched across all corners of our nation's historic capital. DC X-Racers were the first to experience a new technology we launched where their checkpoint was moving across the city and race teams could track them online in real-time. Just when teams thought they were close to finding the checkpoint, they'd glance down and realize their strategy had completely changed. Teams did everything from racing to the top of a historic clock tower, to climbing to the top of a slide in their socks. In the end, the team that came out on top was local Urban Adventure Racing legends "Nattitude". With a time of 2 hours 9 minutes and 25 seconds, Nattitude beat out Mighty Motrin Power Racers by over 25 minutes, but it was Mighty Motirn that got the last laugh as they gained enough points to climb to the top spot on the leaderboard with just 3 races left.
Conditions: Mostly Cloudy, Cool (68 degrees)
Highlights: Fenway Park, Granary Burying Ground, Boston Commons, North End
With the largest Xplore crowd yet, and half the field made up of returning race teams, Boston became a battleground for pride and Leaderboard points. Teams traveled from more than 300 miles away to compete in one of the most historic cities in the nation. In a race where strategy on-the-go made all the difference, even the most experienced racers found themselves second guessing their decisions. With a Red Sox/Yankees game in action, and a number of large festivals taking place across the city, teams that suddenly found themselves in the middle of a huge crowd could quickly lose time and position. No matter where teams raced, they returned to the finish exhausted, happy, and with a mouth full of tea leaves. Local legends and Xplore Points Leaders, Zack Attack, ran one of their best races ever and dominated the field. Finishing nearly 30 minutes ahead of 2nd place (Vignette-M) and an hour ahead of 3rd (Vignette-J), Zack Attack expanded their points lead as we reach the halway point in the inaugural Xplore season.
Conditions: Sunny, Pleasant (78 degrees)
Highlights: Rose Test Garden, Pioneer Courthouse, Food Carts, Powell's City of Books
In a city known for their elite urban racing teams, this race put them to the test. With nearly perfect conditions and a spread out course, teams were forced to strategize the entire race. Do we skip this checkpoint or that one? Do we take public transit or just try to run there? How am I going to get this donut filling out of my hair after the race? In the end it was The Goats who edged out a handful of other nationally renowned racers by about 5 minutes for the first ever Xplore PDX title. In an epic race to the finish, 2nd through 5th place teams all crossed the line within 10 seconds of each other. Rivals on the course but friends at the finish, the top teams all grabbed a beer together and reflected on their battle.
Conditions: Sunny, Pleasant (78 degrees)
Highlights: Navy Pier, Chicago Theater, Millennium Park, Ohio Street Beach
The Midwest teams made a clear statement to the rest of the country. They are a serious force in the urban racing community. On a nearly perfect day, both veteran racing teams and first-timers pushed themselves as only Chicagoans can, and crossed the finish line wet, sandy, and happy! The top two teams (Schmelmop and Peer Reviewed) set a new standard for the XPLORE leaderboard, by dominating their competition by over 40 minutes. If any of the Chicago teams travel to other XPLORE races this year, they may be tough to beat.
Conditions: Clear, Warm (88 degrees)
Highlights: Central Park, Times Square, Washington Square Park, The Highline, SoHo
The top three teams from Philly traveled to NYC to take on the local competition, and the toughest urban racing destination in the country. What they didn't anticipate being even tougher than the brutal landscape, were two of the three first-ever XPLORE solo racers. Team Vignette-M and Vignette-J tore through the streets, and through the competition. Finishing almost 7 minutes ahead of 2nd place, and 20 minutes ahead of 3rd, Vignette-M made history by becoming the first-ever solo racer to take home the XPLORE title (and with it, over $400).
Conditions: Clear, Hot (95 degrees)
Highlights: Love Park, Independence Hall, Washington Square, 30th Street Station
A July heat wave created brutal conditions for the Inaugural XPLORE Urban Race, but we wouldn't want it any other way. This race set the tone for all others to come, and every team stood up to the test. Philly guru "Clubedventures" became the first-ever XPLORE champion, dominating their next closest competition by over 32 minutes. And just like that, rivals are born.