Department of Tourism
Adventure Races Returning to Carter Caves State Park
Outdoor adventure racing is making a resurgence in Kentucky with plans for staging two contests at Carter Caves State Resort Park during the weekend of April 1-2, 2006.
Odyssey Adventure Racing, organizer of the two-day event, is hoping to attract as many as 425 competitors to the races, which will include mountain biking, trail running, paddling and basic caving in and around the park in northeastern Kentucky’s Carter County, near Ashland.
The event will feature two separate adventure races: a 12-hour race on Saturday and a 4-6 hour sprint race on Sunday. The 12-hour race will cover approximately 45 miles and the sprint about 25 miles of rugged terrain amid the beauty of the mountainous surroundings of the park.
“The 2002 and 2003 Carter Caves 12-hour and Sprint adventure races were the last races Odyssey had the privilege of hosting in Kentucky,” said Odyssey spokeswoman Susanna Greever. A change in ownership of the Virginia-based company and an already full race schedule led to the omission of Kentucky from the calendar in 2004 and 2005, but the new owners, Ronny Angell and Hollie Flynn, wanted to include the state on their circuit again, Greever said.
Soloists and teams of two or three competitors will face challenges that test their endurance and navigational skills. “The 12-hour race is designed for experienced athletes looking for a very demanding single-day race that tests all of the skills of longer competitions. The sprint race is the perfect opportunity for ambitious athletes to learn more about adventure racing,” Flynn said.
Teams from Kentucky, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Georgia and Tennessee have already registered for the event, Greever said. Details on registration for the competition can be obtained by visiting Odyssey’s website at www.oarevents.com or calling 540-444-4422.
The first place team overall in the premier division (three-person coed) will collect a cash prize of $525, second place a $300 race voucher, and third a $150 race voucher. The series winner will receive a $900 race voucher plus paid entry in a 2007 Odyssey one-day race.
Early registration fees for the 12-hour race are $185 for a solo competitor, $300 for a team of two, and $450 for a team of three. For the sprint race, registration for a solo competitor is $135, $200 for a team of two and $300 for a three-person team. By registering before March 2, competitors can save $15-$75, Greever said.
Entrants who cancel at least two weeks before the race are entitled to a credit refund, minus a cancellation fee.
Certified medical staff will be on hand to attend to any injuries. Accommodations are available at the state park, 800-325-0059, and nearby motels.
Odyssey Adventure Racing is a race promotion organization that specializes in premier ultra-distance and extreme sporting events. In the nine years since the company was founded, it has produced more adventure races and other multi-sport competitions than any other sports promoter in the country, Greever said. Odyssey events have been televised on many broadcast and cable networks, including NBC, CBS, ABC, ESPN and Discovery.