ECARS Championship Race Recap

This is an article recapping the ECARS championship race and results.
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Located in the beautiful Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania, Seven Springs Mountain Resort has become a Mecca for outdoor adventures over the past years. No longer limited to the winter months, Seven Springs has truly become a four-season resort. Miles of trail and beautiful, rolling landscapes create the perfect location for an adventure race. This is why for the second year in a row Seven Springs has been the home of the East Coast Adventure Racing Championship. On top of the mountain, racers gathered to plot their plans for trekking the 18 hours of running and biking that took place September 15th.


The night before the race as the racers were strategizing, a storm blew through the area bringing chilling temperatures along with it. It didn't look like it would be a promising start which was set for 12 midnight Saturday morning. As the start approached, the storm was replaced with a thick fog. The racers took a quick lap around Lake Tahoe to create some space between the teams for safety reasons; it would be too dangerous to have all the teams so close together with such limited visibility. After the lap, the athletes grabbed their bikes and ventured out into the foggy, rainy night that was ahead of them. As the rain became a mist, and the sun started to rise through the fog, the weather cleared to make crisp, fall-like conditions for the racers to continue on with the many miles of ground left to cover. As the ticking of the clock and fatigue starting to set in, TeamSOG knew what pressure they had on their shoulders trying to defend their ECARS Championship win at Seven Springs. What pressure? TeamSOG clocked in first at each transition area leading with their prime navigation skills through the whole race coming into the finish around 4 PM of Saturday September 15th with two hours left to go of the race. Earl Blanchard and Chris Caul, two very strong solo competitors, were not far behind of the TeamSOG trio as they raced through the woods and trails together. Placing second was the 4 person coed teams REV3/Mountain Khakis and GOALS finished 3rd. After the race concluded, the teams and the race director figured out the points each team earned and looked at the finishing times and decided to award Rev3 and GOALS a tie for 2nd place. Breakaway Howler Monkeys and Trail-Heads ended up with strong finishes in 3rd and 4th place. The rankings in ECARS were close all season and any team had a chance to win. Only a few points separated the top teams, so this was the deciding race. TeamSOG defended their championship title finishing the year with 990 points. GOALS ARA snatched 2nd place from Rev3/Mountain khakis beating them with only 1 point difference! GOALS finished up the 2012 season with 898.5 points and Rev3 finished with 897.5 points. It can't get any closer than that, folks.


*All rankings are available at eastcoastadventureracing.com


This year the Championship had a $10,000 prize purse with the winners receiving $4,000 followed by 2nd through 5th places taking $2,800, $1800, $900, and $400 respectively. The sponsors gave away thousands of dollars' worth of “swag” this year such as Greenlayer Ozone Jackets, Darn Tough Vermont Socks, S.O.G. Knives & Tools, Switch Magnetic Eyewear, Liberty Bottle, Honey Stinger Assorted Products, Headsweats Hats and Visors, Princeton Tec Assorted Headlamps, ENO Hammocks, Soleus G.P.S Watches, Elete Electrolyte Add-Ins, American Adventure Sports Gift Card, Cablz Eyewear Retainers, Scott Running Shoes and Mystery Prizes. The season was capped off with a wonderful dinner and live music as the teams celebrated with a well-known racer Mike Kloser. Mike gave an inspirational speech about his life of adventure racing and how it became known to him and many others of this sport.


The top three teams will all be trucking on to the USARA Adventure Race National Championship in Catskill Mountains - Kerhonkson, New York October 11th -13th. TeamSOG will have to go on to defend their USARA national championship title just like they did at the ECARS Championship. This has been an exciting season and a great year for the East Coast Adventure Racing Series, and we are already excited for next year! Good luck to all the teams in the future of training and competing and good health and good times to all.

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