The annual Eco Challenge race took place on Saturday in the pouring rain, with a record number of participants taking part this year. There were 16 teams of four, as well as support crews, for a total of about 100 participants. All but eight were Coast Guard personnel. Another 60 volunteers staffed the checkpoints.
The event started at the Chiniak airport, and ended at the Golden Anchor on base. Participants biked, ran and then paddled across Kalsin, Middle, and Women’s bays, as well as scaling Heitman Mountain.
The team "Hard Cormorants" won the event by 10 minutes, but only on the strength of having over 30-minutes subtracted from their total time on the course because of performance in three challenges along the course. Team "Rip Tide" had the fastest race time over the 37-mile course, more than a dozen minutes faster than the Cormorants. The Fist Pumpers were third, also based on minutes shaved from their course time.
Click "Read more" below to see full results.
Thirty-three minutes of Fist Pumpers’ bonus came from carrying a very large rock from atop Heitman Mountain to the finish line. Participants were instructed to pick up a rock and carry it with them. Some carried small rocks, others larger ones. Turns out a minute was subtracted for every pound the rock weighed. Pam Foreman gathered these comments from a Fist Pumpers’ team member and the checkpoint crew:
— (Eco Challenge 1 12 sec "What’s the rock for? … take it out of there (laughter)")
That 33-pound rock catapulted the Fist Pumpers from sixth to third place.
Other bonuses came from a marksmanship challenge, shooting a charging bear dummy with a paintball gun, and a memory test at another check point.
— (Eco Challenge 2 13 sec "Just keep in mind … that’d be incorrect.")
Rachael Dyer of the Coast Guard’s Moral, Welfare and Recreation division was the coordinator of the Eco Challenge. She said the route was designed by her boss at MWR, Joe Bauer. But even after it was laid out, there was still a lot of work to be done:
— (Eco Challenge 3 30 sec "We also, of course had to … I had like eight of them.")
Team Name Course Time Adjustments Final
Hard Cormorants 6:44:52 -30:30 6:14:22
Rip Tide 6:32:21 -02:30 6:34:51
Fist Pumpers 7:47:44 -39:00 7:08:44
"PTSD" 7:30:54 -07:00 7:23:54
Wild Lifers 7:26:25 +02:00 7:28:25
Ascending Barbarians 7:43:20 +11:30 7:59:50
Island Time 8:04:52 +08:30 8:18:22
911 – We’ll Need It 8:40:15 +00:30 8:40:45
AH Jos 8:45:05 -13:30 8:41:35
3 Men and a Baby 8:44:20 00:00 8:49:20
Pushki Eaters 8:53:53 -04:30 8:49:23
Blue Bye You 8:41:06 +11:30 8:52:36
Pushing Up Daisies 9:00:27 +11:30 9:16:57
AH "Deck Force" 8:41:06 +01:30 9:17:36
3 Chicks & Richard 9:03:58 +17:30 9:26:28
Please Resuscitate! 9:54:13 +02:30 10:01:43