Budding Racers

Another month of Adventure Racing news from Open Adventure, to find out more on the Open5 Adventure Race series, the Endurance Series as well as a pointer or two for where to go to train, read on...  

2007 Mountain Hardwear Open5 series

Sutton Bank - 11th March

Three weeks to go before the next Open5 event at Sutton Bank, a first for the Yorkshire Moors and its looking pretty special. We were checking it out last week and were fortunate to gain mountain bike access to a few areas that rarely see two wheels.  Sutton Bank is also renown for gliding that sets off from the Roulsten Scar (you would be as well to abide by the out of bounds on this event, decapitated competitors don't look good on the photos).  Have a look on their website if you fancy a serious recce of the area from the air.

We have also been doing some maths and updated the website with how much in the way of prizes we dish out at the Open5 events, we are still reeling over the mighty figure of £9000 worth of prizes, with still more up for grabs in the endurance series.  The first competitors to make claim to these prizes found their way to Hebden Bridge in January. 

Hebden Bridge was a wet one and one that created the head scratching as expected, courtesy of Jonathan Emberton and Phil Scarf's planning.  Stoodley Pike towering above the town provided entertainment as the pair stationed a control on the wind swept balcony.  Check out Anna Gracie's race report and James Kirby's photos on Sleepmonsters here.

[Hebden Bridge - Photo James Kirby]

Under 18?

Earlier this year a debate rattled around on Sleepmonsters on under 18's competing in events, we did some poking around in this murky area of legislation which is not all that clear for event organisers.  Having discussed it with our insurers we are now formally allowing 14-17 year olds to compete in Open5 events.  There is a little catch they have to be competing in a pair and the other half has to be a legal guardian (which is not a mate who is over 18).  Already William Haynes has taken up the batten to drag his Dad Adam around on events.  With a storming performance they took first place in male pairs at Hebden Bridge.  If you have any questions about this and are considering persuading Mum or Dad to have a go, give us a call.

Remember to count for a place in the series you only need to enter three of the Open5 events this year, with four more to go there is plenty of chance to crawl up the table.

Sutton Bank - 11th March :: Keswick - 13th May :: Grassington - 30th September :: Coniston - 25th November

2007 Endurance series

Entries are coming in for the Endurance series, it may be another 4 months till the first event but if you want to bag the discount for the entering the series, Open12 or Open24 you need to get your entry to us by the first of March (day after 28th February!).

Open5 - Keswick 13 May
Open12 - Yorkshire Dales 23/24 June
Open24 - Lake District 28/29 July

Course design for the Open12 and the Open24 is taking shape, its hard to comprehend crossing rivers in June and July whilst ice torments waterfalls and little streams.  We have updated information on these events in particular minimum distances to complete the events and yet still manage the special stages.  The minimum route round the Open24 is 10km shorter than both 2005 and 2006, our aim is to ensure everybody completes the event and has a great time. 

To find out more on the endurance series, Open12 and the Open24 click here

[Open24 2006 - Photo Rob Howard - www.sleepmonsters.co.uk]

That noted we don't want to belittle what is in store for the Open24 and we are making a point of highlighting that anyone who completes this years event will at some point find themselves above 600m and it could well be dark.  The guys behind Nav+ART the mountain marathon / AR training guys and Open Adventure regulars are putting on a special day of training for people taking on the endurance series, it will be on the 12th May the day before the first Open5 and will be based in the North Lakes.  You can find out more detail on Joe Faulkner's website here.  They also still have spaces on their 2 day navigation course in March.


No doubt about it Open Adventure is pretty fortunate to have so many brands on board to support its events - we certainly never see a competitor who has bagged a podium place walk away unhappy with their hoard of goodies.  That said the title sponsorship for the Open24/endurance series has eluded us.  We are pretty keen to get the Open24 on TV in 2007, so if you are part of a business that would benefit from having it's name in front of the Open24 logo give us a shout.  We think you will be very surprised as to how little it will cost.


We like to point budding adventure races in the right direction when training.  With most experienced racers its recognised that a great (and often cheap) way of improving your navigation is have a crack at some orienteering events.  You will have to turn a blind eye to the pyjamas and the strange glasses some wear, pick one of the more low key colour coded events and see how you get on.

Check this link out to an interactive site showing you events coming up in your area on a map.  Click here

Well that's all for now, looking forward to seeing you in a few weeks at Sutton Bank. 

As ever no worries
James Thurlow