IndyQuest Adventure Race 2014

Previously.

Want to hear a story about how this 42 mile GPS map was built? Keep reading…

urbanmap

Win Or Lose We Still Booze were ready to defend our title of Champs as the PA Urban Sprint Race. Except we couldn’t because they changed the name. It’s now IndyQuest. Fine, let’s race!

We arrived at Fountain Square Brewery to sign in and get our paper work. This year we only had 1 map at the start and a clue sheet. We assumed our usual roles of BA as clue guy, KOD as navigator and myself as passport keeper. Last year we used clear contact paper instead of map cases and it worked really well so we employed that tactic again. Having 1 map was great so we folded it over and didn’t have much to mess with while riding.

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The race always starts with some challenge before you take off. Helps spread the field out. This year, the first challenge wasn’t meant to be a tough challenge but turned out that way for a few teams. At the start of the race, the RD (race director) puts up a map. You have to go on foot a marked location and get your passport. BA always leads us off, so he took the honors of this. And BA took off the wrong direction with about 5 other teams. The RD was stunned. After a few deep breaths, he got on the megaphone and said, “If you are traveling NORTH you may be going in the wrong direction.” Problem was, BA is a fast little guy. He was gone. Gone for 8 minutes. As we saw him returning, KOD took off the other way to get the passport. We were literally the last team to leave the start. We had some ground to make up.

Checkpoint (CP) 1-5 on bike:

We rode our bikes from Fountain Square to downtown to CP1, a 30 story stair climb. At first I was glad this was first and on fresh legs (except for BAs). A week later, my legs are finally back to normal. I hobbled for 4 days after. We blew by many teams here. Made up a lot of ground by not stopping at all on the stairs. CP2 & 3 were clues to find at different downtown spots. The green box in the background had a colored circle on it. We had to note the color on our passport.

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

CP5 was a frisbee challenge. 1 team member had to knock over a 2-liter bottle, 

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

then get the coveted punch on the passport attached to these flags. You see these flags all day long!

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

Besides the fun obstacles you encounter on the race course, you meet competitors with sweet outfits like this guy.

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

CP6-10 on Foot:

Arriving at CP6, we got our O course map. We could get these 5 points in any order. We like to get the farther points sooner rather than later, so we switched directions from most teams here which was a great strategy to gaining time. The first circle we hit was at a bridge. Knowing the RD, I told the guys it would be under it in the water somewhere. And I was right. Moving to our next CP, we were looking at our first creek crossing. KOD says, “Do we want to win this thing?” YES! On the 2nd arrow below (green is where we started from), we crossed a creek and likely the source of my current poison ivy shit, into a trailer park. It seemed like something out of a movie. Random people coming from the woods running across lawns like the apocalypse. Once we got to the spot of the CP, I asked BA, “What’s our clue?” His response, “I don’t know.” You are the clue keeper! He left the clue sheet back at the green circle where our bikes were. We were stumped at what to do. Until… another team had followed our path and agreed to help us. That is not cheating and is allowed in this race!

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The O course also brought us to the Indiana Medical History Museum. Here we had to find the hours of operation on a sign. The CP on the map was at an intersection, but I knew exactly what building the IMHM was. So I yelled to my boys ahead of me (they are fast) to stop. With confused looks I told them I had been to the IMHM before so I knew where the sign was. We didn’t need to go any further. KOD says “Of course, you’ve been there. Why wouldn’t you have?!” I am random at times.

Back on the bikes to CP11 for Ladder golf. 1 teammate had to get the balls around 1 of the top 2 rungs. Check out that form!

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

The boys turns

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

CP13-15: Canoe time was up next! 

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

We got CP12 on bike across the river before hitting the east side of the river for CP13-15. Upon arrival, we learned that we were now in 2nd place overall! This year the RD supplied the paddles and PFDs. We quickly learned that we needed our own double sided paddles. We probably did 3x more strokes without the double sided ones. But of course, we still were having fun!

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

CP16 looked amazing! We rode up to a bunch of stuffed animals lined up at the bottom of a hill. Teddy bear bowling was invented! Just like in golf, I took the first pass at this so the boys could see my line. KOD went 2nd and nailed it. We were making quick work of these things!

CP18-21 on Foot:

We arrived back to the home base to receive our next set of maps and clues. This was a foot course in Fountain Square for CP18-21. 2 were clues about signs on things. We were hoping the clue at La Margarita was about tequila drinking. It was, but not for us to drink. We had to count the tequila bottles on 3 shelves behind the bar. We divided up the shelves among the 3 of us. Then rotated to get another set of numbers. I randomly selected a number from our list from each shelf, and surprise! We got it on our first try. Not sure if there was a threshold clause, but we didn’t care. Off to the next one!

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

We went around the back of the restaurant to find climbing gear laid out for us. 1 person had to stay down and 2 people had to go up to the roof. 

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

I, as videographer, stayed down and sent the boys up. As I looked at these pictures today, I remembered that BA doesn’t like heights. His facial expression while climbing the sketchy scaffolding was priceless. Here’s KOD going up.

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

Seriously, they were high up.

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

The point of going up was to throw darts off the side of the building that needed to hit a watermelon.

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

It was like a dangerous game of Plinko with the wind. There were 10 darts I sent up in a bucket that the boys would rope down. KOD hit it after 5 darts! Let’s move out! And this is where we noticed where the 3rd place team was… Arriving as we were leaving. But we weren’t sure what order they did the foot course in. It was a good gut check going into the last leg of the course. 

CP22-28 on bike:

We were still in 2nd place at this point, but 10+ minutes behind the leaders. They were strong bikers. We (me and BA) are not. KOD makes it look so easy! Our goal was to maintain.

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CP22 had us doing the limbo at a winery. CP23 was a home made golf ball launcher, with our target being a tile board that we had to break a tile out of. It was quite the contraption dreamed up by the RD.

CP24 & 25 was our downfall. The clue read “Bike to CP24/25 for a Special Challenge worth 2 checkpoints”. At the pre-race briefing this CP was also called out for being worth 2 points and we’d have 2 choices upon arrival. Many points in the race, the beginner teams don’t get all the CPs. If you want to win, you get all the CPs. Our interpretation of this clue was that we had to complete both puzzles to get 2 points. WRONG. We arrived to several stations with a round wood puzzle with the British flag on it. The boys immediately let me get to work. It was double sided, so I knew once I got one piece to line up, it was just a matter of trying to match the edges (you’ll see it in the video below). Once we got that one done, we moved over to what we THOUGHT we had to do for the extra point. It was 9 pieces of 4×4 wood cut in the same length. They had random colored dots on different sides. We tried lining them up. We tried color coding. Nothing looked like a finished piece. We asked the volunteer “Did the first team through do both?” She said no, so we agreed to keep trying until the 3rd place team arrived. Which we did wasting 8 minutes on something we didn’t need to do. Just 1 puzzle was worth 2 points since they were so “hard”. After the race and all my Survivor analysis on what that 2nd puzzle was, I was stumped. I had to ask the RD. Guesses anyone?!

CP26 & 27 were clues on signs. Then we were treated to one last challenge at CP 28 of corn hole. We arrived here exactly with the 3rd place team. Finished about equally and took off to the finish. Even had to wait at a red light right next to them! But they were bikers. We were not. They beat us to the finish by 1 stinking minute. I look happy, but deep down I was bummed.

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

We got out of our wet clothes to freshen up and hydrate. My face here says it better. Waahh wahhh. 3rd.

Michelle Craig Photography: Indy Quest Urban Race &emdash;

Photo courtesy of Michelle Craig Photography

We made 3 critical errors this time. 1. Go the right direction at the start. 2. Always bring your clue sheet. 3. Always read your clue sheet. After being down 10 minutes, gaining that back, then losing it at the puzzle… it was defeating for me. It was our strategic choice to make and I still think with what we knew, we made the best decision for us. So, after 2 weeks, I’m over it now! Ready for next year and some flaming arrows!

And note to self: Cover all skin all day. I don’t want to go through this F’in poison ivy shit again.

Here is some video I managed to shoot while out on the 42 mile course!