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Day 7: It's All About Timing
A full day of flights on day 6 gave Agent40 the energy necessary to push forth into day 7. HQ had Agent40 starting early as he would have the help from various informants at his home.
Before breakfast, the morning began with five puzzles, each locked in a wooden box with a 3-code lock keeping its contents enclosed. Agent40 was allowed to the use the life-line of brotherly love in order to solve the puzzles, and luckily our operative chose the right family member.
We wanted Agent40 to enjoy this part of the trip almost more than any other, so we gave him the rest of the day off from training and let him run free. Although there was one last activity to finish before the day's end; travel out to a remote part of New Mexico and bury a time capsule with family. This would task would Agent40 give time to reflect and truly envision what the future holds for himself and his loved ones.
On a short day 7 that about sums it up. Cheers to an amazing full week of exploring across the country and cheers to more days to come!
Day 8 will be released later tomorrow, stay tuned!
Day 3: Trust Your Intuition
After being picked up by our informant, AgentY, the two operatives spent the night reminiscing about old missions and discussing what might be expected out of mission 3. In the early morning HQ enlisted the postal service to drop off a secret envelope in AgentY's mailbox. The top secret package listed the day's challenges as well as what would be expected of the agents while exploring the Windy City.
Soon after the agents deciphered the encrypted message we left with them inside the envelope, they briskly wondered into the city. Although, HQ had set the challenges at the highest difficulty, Agent40 and AgentY showed that seasoned operatives can also be the most resourceful, breezing through the orders laid out. Before finishing the final mini-mission, Agent40 had been tipped off by a personal informant in Chicago that our last destination was compromised, and after a review of the intel collected HQ thought it would be in the best interest of both operatives to scout a different location.
With the operatives overcoming such a hectic day in stride HQ decided to cut off both early to enjoy the rest of the day. The agents rewarded themselves with frothy beverages and HQ rewarded the agents with a celebratory clue on the next flight for day 4 of the birthday adventure.
Tomorrow follows day 4 of Agent40's performance and training review. Stay tuned to find out where we send Agent40 next!
Throughout all of the races our inaugural year, there was one question that was consistently asked when teams were checking in. It occurred seconds after we handed a racer one of our paper race bibs and a handful of jagged safety pins. "Do we have to wear this...?"
Up until today the answer was always "Yes, you'll need to wear it."
Being racers ourselves, we've never really liked having that annoying piece of paper pinned to us. It gets in your way, it's uncomfotable, the pins damage your clothing, and it tends to deteriorate when racers get soaked or dirty...which seems to happen a lot in our races.
Going forward our racers will use a method that has long been the preferred choice by triathlons and serious adventure races alike. "Body Marking", or having your bib number displayed on yourself, is a durable and effective way to identify that you are in the middle of a fun and competitive race through the city, without having to wear a paper bib and safety pins.
Not only will our racers now be able to spend more time running through city fountains, rolling down a muddy hill, or getting hit with a jelly donut, but we also think Body Marking looks pretty badass too!
There are endless types of durable markers that will do the job, from the standard Sharpie found in your junk drawer, to those specifically for races like this, found at running stores, sporting goods locations, or online dealers like the one found HERE.
No matter what option you go with, all are safe and can be removed after the race using a variety of methods. Some simple ways of removing your body markings are detailed HERE.
Here's how to "Body Mark" yourself on race day:
1. Simply write the word "XPLORE" somewhere highly visible on your body or exterior layer of clothing.
2. Write the 3-digit Race Bib Number that you registered with, somewhere highly visible on your body or exterior layer of clothing. If you forget your 3-digit Race Bib Number you can confirm it by logging into your Eventbrite account and reviewing your registration details. The number you wear will need to match the number you registered with so our race headquarters can verify your team members throughout the race.
*The word "XPLORE" and your 3-Digit Race Bib Number need to be visible at all times, clearly written, and large enough that you can easily be identified by on-course volunteers, partnering businesses, and our remote race headquarters.
*If you prefer to not write on your body you can simply write the two required pieces of information on any exterior layer of clothing, headbands, hats, costumes, etc. Be creative and have fun looking like the true adventure racer you are!
If you have any questions or need more information about our move to Body Marking just send us an email at XTeam@XperienceAdventures.com at any time!
The first time I had competed in an urban race was a few months before my wedding. Knowing my love of adventure a few of us guys got together for a bachelor style event (minus the Mike Tyson encounter) and decided to try out this racing thing. We had no idea what we were doing, we were out of shape, our outfits were bargain bin specials, and my Best Man wore his headband like a scrunchie the entire time.
We almost won the damn thing.
Since then our racing team "The Hard Corps" has evolved quite a bit. We now travel to cities around the country doing what we've come to love, we've competed at the National Championship level, and we've ditched the bargain bin outfits for some new digs sponsored by Xperience Adventures.
In all of our travels both competing in races and putting on the Xplore Racing Series there's one thing that every racer seems to have in common. The desire to be better.
The desire to be in better shape, to have a better strategy, to know public transit better, or to find gear that works better.
Whether you want to just improve from a previous race, or you want to out-perform everyone around you, and be remembered in urban racing lure for years to come.
Everyone wants to become an Urban Racing BEAST!
Knowing that, we're starting a blog series that will help you get there! Stay tuned to our site and make sure to follow our social networks and subscribe to our email list to get the most information and get it as soon as it's released.
Shortly after the inaugural season of the Xplore Urban Adventure Race ended, our team traveled to Philadelphia to meet up with the first-ever X-Prize Champions, Team Clubedventures, on their home turf (a quaint bar in downtown Philly).
Team Captain Ed Wagner competed with 3 different teammates, and did some solo racing, to take on 6 of the 9 total Xplore races nationwide.
The team that started at the top of the leaderboard after our first race in Philly, ended at the top, but what happened in between was an epic battle of grit and wit. The teams at the top of the leaderboard were shifting after almost every race, and just like that, urban racing strategy shifted from a one-day event, to a season-long competition.
While hanging with the champs, we talked about strategy, their most memorable races, and what it takes to stand atop the leaderboard at the end of the season. The video below provides some insight into how they finished with 4475 points on the leaderboard, a Domination Factor of negative 24 minutes and 45 seconds (the average time they finished compared to the average team), and over $1,500 in prize money!
We're excited to be launching our new Blog, which will include tons of content on Urban Adventure Racing, health, gear, and what we're up to next! We plan on having guest contributors including Urban Adventure Racing teams, and anyone that can bring interesting stuff to the table, or frankly anyone that bribes us with some Double Chocolate Milano cookies. Don't even bother with the Single Chocolate variety, the wafer to chocolate ratio is a joke!
To follow all of the great posts in the future be sure to follow this blog by coming back to this site regularly, or connecting with our Tumblr version by clicking the icon below
We're also very excited and humbled to be launching our 2014 Xplore Urban Adventure Racing registration tonight! Our schedule includes 20 cities nationwide, more than double the locations we raced in last year, with a strong emphasis on expanding west of our home East Coast region.
We spent a lot of time in the off-season brainstorming ways to make Urban Adventure Racing even more fun, affordable, and strategic for everyone. Being urban racers ourselves, and competing in many races throughout the country (including a 6th place finish in a National Championship), we not only love the sport, but we feel we design our races with the teams and racers very much in mind.
Our brainstorming sessions and conversations with dozens of racing teams generated tons of ideas on how to improve the Urban Racing scene, and give it a little shot in the arm. Not too much has changed in the urban racing industry since we raced in our first event years ago. Our hope is to amp it up a little over the next few years with some creative new concepts, starting with a few this year:
1. Xplore will become more of a high-tech race, utilizing social media, mobile apps, multi-media, email and text messaging for checkpoint validation.
2. Each city will consist of "zones" where all checkpoints will fall within on race day. Registered teams will be able to view these zones pre-race and begin strategizing days before the race even launches.
3. Teams can start from anywhere in the city as they wait for the race to launch. Strategy, public transportation access and where the "zones" for that city are will likely play a big role in determining where your team is at the start.
4. As teams await the start of the race they will get a good sense of the competition they're up against when team pictures and/or messages get posted to social media and our race website.
5. As the race launches, a list of clues or checkpoints will be posted to a designated site. We won't be limited by a piece of paper so we expect clues to be creative, unique, and consist of puzzles, multi-media, or other fun ways to challenge each team.
6. Like last year, teams can travel on foot or use public transit throughout the race. We will reduce the total number of checkpoints from last year in order to spread the course and make each checkpoint really creative, interactive, and potentially time consuming. Our hope is to have mostly challenges that will level the playing field and could trip you up if you make poor decisions, or get you ahead of the competition if you're savvy. We also plan on staying true to our model from last year of getting teams down and dirty and testing their physical and mental abilities.
7. Teams will be submitting checkpoint validation quickly and easily to our race headquarters in real-time via a variety of methods depending on the type of challenge. No carrying around bulky objects, no dead cell phones or cameras when trying to get clues checked, no controversial decisions made by race staff or volunteers after getting all the way to the finish. Submit, forget about it, and focus on having fun racing.
8. The top teams to finish the required number of checkpoints or challenges will receive prizes (to be determined), and the Top 25 teams will earn points for the one and only leaderboard in Urban Adventure Racing (click HERE to learn more). The team that is standing at the top of the leaderboard at the end of the season will be awarded the title of Xplore Champion and receive the entire X-Prize (a season-long growing cash prize).
9. Once finished, teams meet up at the designated after-party venue in the city (often a local brewery, restaurant, or sports bar) to hang with other teams and take advantage of food and drink specials for racers. Meet fun urban adventure racers from across the country and start planning your team's next race!
We're excited to launch our 2014 season and see where the future takes the Xplore Urban Adventure Racing Series! We hope you join us for the ride and experience some serious fun along the way!
If you made it this far through the Blog you deserve something special! From now through February 2nd use the promo code "adventure" on the registration pages to reveal a hidden deal that will get you an entire team registration (2-5 racers) for only $50! That's right, if you have 5 racers you can all get registered for only $10 per racer! Nuts? Maybe...but there are only 100 racers that will get this deal in each city so if you don't register NOW then you're the one who's nuts!!
Register NOW for all cities on our main racing page HERE
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