These rules are written to ensure the safety and integrity of the racers, race promoter, volunteers, land managers, facilities and the race event itself. Bushwhack Adventures event staff and volunteers will enforce the rules.
The rules for adventure racing fall into that confusing gray area where we try to reconcile the desire to experience the freedom and adventure of charting one’s own course with the need to provide a common basis upon which to measure the performance of teams and determine a winner. The amount of freedom that can be given to teams is dependent upon how well they exercise their ability to race in a fair and honorable manner.
The fundamental rules of adventure racing are fairly simple. Teams of racers must travel by self-propelled means as they navigate their way to various checkpoints. Race directors spice up an AR with a course design that provides challenges for the teams to overcome. Most AR’s are set in wilderness locations and include the opportunity for teams to use their skills of map and compass navigation, mountain biking, running/trekking, paddling and rope work. Other types of challenges are sometimes included along the way, such as mental tasks and brain games. The goal is for teams to use their combined resources and skills to get through a course as efficiently and as fast as possible while following the rules and instructions set out by the race director.
Below are some basic rules for the 2010 Falls Lake Challenge Adventure Race. Additional rules and instructions will be provided through this website, through emails sent to registered teams, and at the pre-race briefing.
- All participants must be at least 18 years of age, unless racing with their parent(s).
- Team members must complete all registration forms and sign all waivers prior to competing.
- The race directors for the 2010 Falls Lake Challenge AR are Rob Ward, Marcilynn Smith, Patrick Downie, and Don Childrey.
- Teams may continue unofficially if a team member drops out, upon a race director’s approval, as long as at least two team members remain.
- Race volunteers are not trained or authorized to provide rule clarifications or exceptions. Questions should be asked at the pre-race briefing to the extent possible. Race volunteer opinions can be solicited, but may not be upheld by race directors. Race volunteers can seek answers from race directors for a team, but a timely response may not be possible. The best approach for a team is to consider the “spirit of the event” and not necessarily the “letter of the rules” when facing a decision not clearly spelled out in these rules.
- The race directors reserve the right to modify the rules or the course at any time in order to preserve the “spirit of the event” and provide a fair race to all. Any protests can be made after completion of the race to a race director by the team captain.
- All decisions by the race directors are final.
In order for a team to be credited with collecting points for a checkpoint, the race passport must be punched in the correct block or noted otherwise on the passport, and the passport must be turned in to race staff at the finish line.
Scoring will be based on total points collected by a team, minus any point penalties. The winner of each division on each course shall be the team with the highest point total after any point penalties have been applied. Checkpoints will be worth varying point values, and will be listed in the race passport. Teams must choose which checkpoints to go after, based on their strengths and the time remaining. Working out your route strategy is part of the race challenge.
- There may be intermediate cutoffs in the race, where race officials direct teams that are not making sufficient progress to skip portions of the course.
- There will be absolute finish cutoff time 6 hours after the official start of the race.
- Teams are permitted to help other teams during the race. Teams may be awarded a time/point bonus for helping other teams in emergency need.
- Towing of teammates is allowed and encouraged on all legs.
Ten Point Penalty
- For failure to produce any requested piece of mandatory gear during a random gear check during the race.
- For failing to produce the team’s official race number at any time during the race and at the finish line.
- For failing to keep all members of a team close enough to regroup and hold hands within 30 seconds during the race.
- For each minute past the course cutoff time (portions of a minute will be rounded up) that a team arrives late at the finish.
Non-compliance with any of the following rules will result in team disqualification.
- Teams must obey instructions from race officials.
- All racers and spectators must follow a Leave-No-Trace ethic (i.e. all garbage and gear must be carried out by racers and support crew).
- Teams must follow the race instructions given by the Race Director, race officials, or found in the race passport.
- Teams must avoid any specified off-limits areas and trails. At all other times it is up to the team to decide navigation routes from CP to CP.
- The use of any electronic device (including laptop computers, GPS, cellular telephones, etc) other than watches or compasses is prohibited at any time.
- Teams must exclusively travel under their own power during the race.
- Helmets must be worn properly while riding bikes.
- All team members must properly wear a Type III PFD while paddling a boat or while in water more than waist deep.
- Teams must provide assistance to any person in danger.
- Interference or alteration of a trail marking, sign, control flag, or punch device is prohibited.