Knoxville hosts largest national adventure racing championship

Knoxville hosts nation's largest national adventure racing championship

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Hundreds of the best adventure racers in North America are in Knoxville this weekend to compete in the nation's largest competitive adventure racing series. Hundreds of the best adventure racers in North America are in Knoxville this weekend to compete in the nation's largest competitive adventure racing series.
Racers will going to run about an hour northwest of the city where they will spend 12 or more hours mountain biking and orienteering. They will then journey 12 miles down the Tennessee River and follow a course through the Urban Wilderness. Racers will going to run about an hour northwest of the city where they will spend 12 or more hours mountain biking and orienteering. They will then journey 12 miles down the Tennessee River and follow a course through the Urban Wilderness.
"It takes a hard charging over-achiever, one of those people who doesn't accept the word 'can't'," said race director Paul Angell. "It takes a hard charging over-achiever, one of those people who doesn't accept the word 'can't'," said race director Paul Angell.
"I like to do crazy things, so here we are," said Mark Krejci when asked why he was taking part in the challenge. "I like to do crazy things, so here we are," said Mark Krejci when asked why he was taking part in the challenge.

By DREW GARDNER
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Hundreds of the best adventure racers in North America are in Knoxville this weekend to compete in the nation's largest competitive adventure racing series.

The Checkpoint Tracker Adventure Racing Championship is a 100 mile race that lasts 30 hours. The intense challenge includes everything from trail running and mountain biking to rappelling and river boarding.    

It's a race unlike any other and not one for the faint of heart.

"It takes a hard charging over-achiever, one of those people who doesn't accept the word 'can't'," said race director Paul Angell.

It also takes the proper course - one that adds up to 100 miles and provides plenty of challenges. It's a course that has been reserved in previous years for venues like large national parks, but this year organizers' sights were turned to Knoxville.

"It's not a city we would have picked if we looked at a map," said Angell.

After a few visits to the area, their minds were quickly changed.

"We realized we had what we needed to do the kind of course we're used to, and we had an opportunity to tie it into something we haven't done, which is leverage an urban wilderness," said Angell.

"The fact that Knoxville can recruit this really starts to put us on the map as an outdoor city," said Carol Evans, Executive Director of the Legacy Parks.

Evans was a key factor in luring the race to the area. 150 people from all over the country will spend the weekend in Knoxville including first time adventure challenger Mark Krejci.

"I like to do crazy things, so here we are," said Krejci when asked why he was taking part in the challenge.

Race organizers admit this race does offer the level of craziness that many are searching for.

"We're going to put them on buses and we're going to run them about an hour northwest of the city where they are going to spend 12 or more hours mountain biking and orienteering," said Krejci.

After that they will journey 12 miles down the Tennessee River overnight back to Knoxville, where they will follow a course through the Urban Wilderness.

"It excites me," said Krejci. "I like the unknown. So this event is right up my alley. You have to figure it out as you go. So, we'll figure it out."

The race will wrap up Saturday at 4 p.m. in Krutch Park in Downtown Knoxville.

More information on future Checkpoint Challenges is available online.

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