It wasn't purely a running race so we thought it was a good way to ease in the the running community. It was part Amazing Race - part scavenger hunt - part running race. We had no real expectations having never done anything like this (not counting year 5 cross country where I finished third for my age...).
Our preparations even went as far as buying a wearable head lamp (think cave explorers). Our back pack was full of things from the organisers suggested list - 2L+ of water; Powerades; $5 cash; towels; notebook; pen; 1 mobile phone; Go Card x 2 (public transport pass). There were prizes for 'dressing up' but we didn't have enough time (or guts) to do so. As we left home the heavens opened so we got ponchos at a corner store. ALL SET!!
Brisbane City Raid - - - here we come!!
We arrived pretty much on time - for us this only ever happens when we have no kids [Thanks Pat :)]. And there were already good number of competitors studying there course maps --> only available 45 minutes before the start. We got our numbers - 73 thank you very much - and proceeded to look around nervously and copy what other people seemed to be doing...
After a few minutes we got a grip on how the map and clues worked and started making plans - it was about ten minutes into this that I actually felt like I had a vague idea of what we were about to do. I definitely wouldn't say we were confident - but we felt we could get to a few of the checkpoints and back to HQ again within three hours. Deep Breath.
I can't even remember if there was a starters gun but before we knew it we were racing to the nearest train station - firm on our plan. All good - got on an earlier train than we had hoped. Got off two stops later jog to first check point; start looking; rain rain rain. 5 minutes in we're still in high hopes. After twenty minutes in the same spot scouring what we thought was every inch of the surrounds we had a moment that the producers of the 'amazing race' tv show must LOVE. If we were on TV the cameraman would have shown us running and then as we passed him, he would have lowered his view to our ankles and focused on the check point marker (a small white plumbing tube on the ground) as we raced off ahead yelling at each other...
Anyway once we eventually doubled back over the whole area several times we found it YAY - checkpoint 39 - dam you for taking so long but thanks for being our first. After that everything went pretty well - we ate dry weet-bix, did rock climbing, untangled word and number puzzles, caught a city cat (ferry) three trains and did a personal training session of 50 sit ups in 1 minute, 200 punches in a minute, 100 skips in a minute and a one minute wall sit. We deciphered clues, found the price of the steak at an award winning restaurant and almosrt attend the QUT toga party in the gardens...! (oh to be 18 again)
A soaked race map, race number and train timetable
It rained the whole time - even with the ponchos we got saturated - but loved it. Mrs Socks was awesome she ran heaps and had the brains to guide us skillfully around via the map. I was very proud of all her running - love you baby xx
We finished two minutes over the deadline which cost us 40 points but we had a great time and got to every checkpoint we had planned to at the start = = = satisfaction.
We stuck around for the presentations (mainly because there were random draw prizes - not because we were expecting to place). As it happens we didn't place top three in either the mens, women's or mixed team categories. We didn't even win the fancy dress prizes or the funny team name prize... and alas not random prizes either, but it was nice to be part of the atmosphere.
Today the full results came out - check us out here - TEAM KAYGAN - 820 points - 49th overall (out of 101 teams).
I'd break it down like this.
- TOP 50
- TOP Half
- TOP 25 for mixed teams
- TOP Half for mixed teams
And I reckon pretty bloody good for people who have never raced or done anything like this before...
We'll be back next year.
From the pair of rockers with two pairs of wet socks.